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Hempfield offers grants to local sports organizations |

Hempfield offers grants to local sports organizations

A baseball field in Hempfield Park photographed on Monday, Feb. 22, 2016.

Hempfield Township will give away up to $15,000 a year to local youth sports organizations.

Nonprofit organizations have until December 31 to apply for a grant through the township. A single organization can receive up to $5,000 per year.

The township has had a nonprofit parks and recreation fund since 2007. The fund is administered by the township supervisors, but is a nonprofit entity separate from the township, which makes fundraising easier, according to supervisor Rob Ritson.

The township recently bolstered the fund with $1 million received from the sale of the Hempfield sewer system to the Muncipal Authority of Westmoreland County.

The fund has been used to pay for park improvements, like the amphitheater currently under construction at Hempfield Park, but Ritson said he wanted to see some of the money regularly going to help the people who run nonprofit sports organizations.

“These are volunteers,” he said. “They’re parents who are maintaining these baseball fields and soccer fields for most of the kids in the township… for us to help them in a little way is just a responsibility we should easily be taking.”

Ritson used to serve in township manager, and was involved in the creation of the fund.

Earlier this year he proposed establishing a grant, and board members agreed.

Grant applications are available from the township.

Jacob Tierney is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jacob at 724-836-6646, or via Twitter @Soolseem.

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