OTTUMWA — The Wapello County Board of Supervisors held a public hearing and approved policies regarding a grant for the Wapello County Emergency Relief Food Program during Tuesday’s six-minute meeting at the courthouse.

The grant was approved earlier this month, but Community Block Development Grant guidelines state a public hearing must be held to discuss the use of the funds.

Board Chairperson Jerry Parker said the county applied for a grant to assist with the food program it has been part of for the last 20 years. The program currently makes one monthly delivery of 235 boxes of food to seniors, but that number has changed over the years, both higher and lower.

COVID-19 has also impacted that.

“Because of the virus, the food bank has suggested that we go to two deliveries a month,” Parker said. “We’d been doing that up to the first of July. This grant will allow us to continue that two-box delivery until the end of December. As someone moves away or passes away, they’ve added another person on.”

To qualify for the grant after applying, the board approved policies that would only apply to this food program.

“We have other purchasing policies that apply to the county, but these are slightly different,” he said. “When the food program ends, the policies for the program end.”

Supervisor Brian Morgan said a public hearing was necessary to formally approve the policies, and a second public hearing would be called later “to fill people in on how it’s going.”

In other business:

• The board approved 93 applications for business property tax credits that were received during the 2019-20 taxable year but payable for the 2020-21 year. There were 96 total applications received.

• The board approved a property tax suspension of $326 for 448 N. Fifth St. in Ottumwa.

Chad Drury can be reached at cdrury@ottumwacourier.com, and on Twitter @ChadDrury

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