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State funds offered to downtown Potsdam property owners

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POTSDAM — Downtown property owners have a shot at state funds that can be used for a host of building renovations.

The Potsdam Planning and Development Office is seeking applications from owners of for-profit mixed-use and commercial downtown properties.

The New York State Main Street program can provide property owners with up to $50,000 for renovation costs, or $10,000 per residential unit for apartments made available to low-income tenants.

“This has been a real priority for the village over the years,” said Frederick J. Hanss, village director of planning and development.

The funds are awarded from a $2.2 million pool, which will be apportioned to communities statewide.

Eligible renovation work includes masonry and structural repairs, roofing, window replacements, electrical work and plumbing improvements.

The funds must be used for upcoming renovations. They cannot be used to reimburse property owners for completed improvements. They are available only for downtown, for-profit locations.

The Potsdam Planning and Development Office will work with property owners on a first-come, first-served basis, according to Mr. Hanss.

Nobody has applied for a grant so far, Mr. Hanss said.

“We’re just going out with this,” he said.

Applications are due in mid-August. The Planning and Development Office will hold an informational meeting at 7 p.m. June 26 in the boardroom of the Potsdam Civic Center, 2 Park St.

The village itself hopes to procure some of the funds to add more trees, benches and signage to downtown streets, Mr. Hanss said.

The Planning and Development Office will submit the collected applications to the state this fall, and funds could be made available by next spring.

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