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Enbridge offers grants to Brandon, Groveland townships



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May 15, 2013 - Enbridge, the multi-billion dollar company that is replacing an oil petroleum pipeline that runs through both Brandon and Groveland townships, is offering affected municipalities environmental stewardship grants.

Municipalities must apply for the grants. Groveland, which has three miles of oil pipeline traversing the township, is eligible for a $15,000 grant, while Brandon, which has six miles of pipeline as well as a pump station, is eligible for $25,000.

"I think it's a nice gesture," said Brandon Township Supervisor Kathy Thurman. "We are certainly appreciative."

A letter to Thurman from Enbridge Project Director Thomas Hodge stated, "Enbridge recognizes the construction activities have temporary impacts along the pipeline right-of-way. Enbridge seeks to partner with the townships and municipalities along the pipeline corridor in Michigan and Indiana to create opportunities for each entity to receive funds that support natural resource protection and enhancement projects and environmental education and stewardship initiatives."

Examples of eligible projects, the letter continued, include park enhancements or development; environmental education; tree plantings; wetland improvements; lake and stream improvements such as invasive species control; natural habitat enhancements; recycling promotion; drainage improvements; and providing matching funds for larger natural resource and environmental projects.

Grants must be applied for by Dec. 31 and funds are available to be used until Sept. 30, 2014, although Thurman said the funds could be earmarked for a longer-term project such as baseball fields as long as the money is placed in a fund specifically for that intention.

"We have gotten a lot of interest in building baseball fields," she said. "We are going to need $400,000 total. The parks and rec committee will be deciding the best use (for the grant)."

Groveland Township Supervisor Bob DePalma said he is considering using the grant money to enhance Shields Road by establishing a tree line there.

Enbridge announced plans in late 2011 to replace the Line 6B petroleum pipeline, a project that spans 210 miles in total, from Griffith, Ind. to Sarnia, Ontario The

Susan covers Brandon Township and Ortonville
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