Committee to York County: Offer Largest Share of Nonprofit Funds to Lackey Free Clinic

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Walter Akers (pictured in white) gives the York County Board of Supervisors a presentation on the funding for civic and cultural organizations at Tuesday's meeting (Marie Albiges/WYDaily)
Walter Akers (pictured in white) gives the York County Board of Supervisors a presentation on the funding for civic and cultural organizations at Tuesday’s meeting. (Marie Albiges/WYDaily)

A committee tasked with recommending how to allocate $30,000 of funding to nonprofits gave Lackey Free Medical Clinic $7,500 to help provide treatment for diabetes.

The Civic and Cultural Grants Advisory Committee, created in October, is made up of five volunteer citizens who read each funding request submitted by local civic and cultural agencies and make recommendations on how the $30,000 are distributed.

On Tuesday, Walter Akers, one of the committee members, explained to the Board of Supervisors why they recommended funding 15 of 19 organizations that applied during the upcoming fiscal year, which begins July 1.

Akers said the group based their decisions on a number of factors, including the need in the community, the amount of other funding the organizations received and the organizations’ listing on GuideStar, a website that provides detailed information on nonprofits.

After meeting twice and reviewing applications over several months, the committee decided to give Lackey Free Clinic $7,500 — $4,100 less than they requested.

The clinic opened in 1995 and gives free medical services to residents in York County, Williamsburg, Poquoson, James City County and Newport News.

‘Their application was head and shoulders over anything that we saw,” Akers said. “They are the only organization that got fives on all the categories from all the evaluators.”

He said the clinic’s application specified exactly what it wanted to use the money for: treatment for diabetes.

“They knew that we only had $30,000 to work with and they said, ‘Let’s address this problem,’” Akers said.

Last year, the committee gave Lackey Free Clinic $8,200. The clinic originally asked for $44,947.

The committee’s next biggest allocation went to York County Meals on Wheels in the amount of $3,280. The organization delivers hot meals to York County residents on a daily basis.

“We would’ve given more if we could,” Akers said. “In addition to just providing meals to these people, they are like the last connection they have to living independently.”

The committee did not allocate any funding to the Colonial Soil and Water Conservation, Foster Grandparents, Early Childhood Music and Williamsburg Land Conservancy.

Akers explained those organizations did not primarily serve the citizens of York County, already received a significant amount of funding from elsewhere or were very similar to the services offered by other organizations.

A complete list of the recommended allocation of the $30,000 can be found at the bottom of this article.

Funding for nonprofits has been cut from the York County budget by more than half over the past four years. In 2010, the board gave a total of $119,130 to nonprofits. In 2011, the amount was cut nearly in half to $56,836, then in half again for 2012 to $23,495.

Last year, 14 organizations submitted requests, and the committee recommended nine organizations receive funding: the American Red Cross, Avalon, CASA, Hospice House and Support Care of Williamsburg, Hosing Partnerships Inc., The Lackey Free Clinic, The Peninsula Agency on Aging, Transitions Family Violence Services and York County Meals on Wheels.

Last year, the city of Williamsburg allocated around $74,000 to outside agencies, while James City County allocated about $229,770, according to their respective budgets.

This year, Williamsburg’s proposed funding for community service agencies calls for $78,002 while James City County’s calls for $233,820.

The York County Board of Supervisors also went over state-mandated funding for agencies as well as funding for regional and local organizations such as the York County Arts Commission, the York County Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Williamsburg Chamber & Tourism Alliance.

If the fiscal year 2016 budget is approved as-is, the Board of Supervisors will double funding for the York County Arts Commission from $15,000 to $30,000.

Sheila Myers, the chairwoman of the arts commission, asked the supervisors during a public hearing in January to follow the state recommendation to spend $1 per every citizen on arts funding. 

Acting County Administrator Mark Carter said Tuesday the goal is to gradually increase the funding to meet that state recommendation.

Below is a list that details how much funding the 19 organizations requested and how much the committee recommended allocating:

  • The American Red Cross asked for $10,000, and the committee recommended the organization receive $1,600.
  • Avalon: A Center for Women and Children asked for $3,900 and received $2880.
  • Colonial Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), which gives support to abused and neglected children in the court system, asked for $6,264 and received $3,040.
  • The Colonial Soil and Water Conservation asked for $18,800 and received no funding.
  • Foster Grandparents, a Hampton-based organization that offers senior citizens a chance to serve as mentors and tutors, asked for $1,000 and received no funding.
  • Housing Partnerships Inc., which provides housing repair services to low-income residents, asked for $10,000 and received $1,300.
  • The Jamestown 4-H Camp asked for $2,000. The committee recommended the board allocate $760.
  • Lackey Free Clinic asked for $11,600 and the committee recommended giving $7,500.
  • The Natasha House, which provides safety and shelter for homeless women, asked for $10,000 and received $1,460.
  • The Peninsula Agency on Aging asked for $3,637 and received $1,720.
  • Early Childhood Music, a program created by the Williamsburg United Methodist Church, asked for $2,000. The committee recommended no funding be allocated.
  • The Arc of Greater Williamsburg, which provides services for citizens with intellectual disabilities, requested $5,000. The committee recommended $360 be allocated.
  • Transitions Family Violence Services asked for $10,000 and received $2,480.
  • The Virginia Peninsula Foodbank requested $10,000. The committee recommended allocating $2,100.
  • Williamsburg Area Meals on Wheels requested $2,500 and received $620.
  • Williamsburg Land Conservancy asked for $2,500 and received no funding.
  • The York County 4-H Club asked for $500 and was fully funded.
  • York County Meals on Wheels requested $6,500. The committee recommended allocating $3,280.
  • Youth Volunteer Corps, which provides volunteer opportunities for children in the county, asked for $5,000 and received $400.

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