HINSDALE, N.H. -- An employee of the Southwest Region Planning Commission briefed the town's Board of Selectmen on the Monadnock Economic Development Corporation's attempt to recoup grant funding it loaned to a local business that failed.
Rebeckah Bullock, a planning technician at SRPC, updated the selectmen at a public hearing Monday and said the MEDC has done all it can to get back as much as possible of the monies doled out to Tri-State Firearms, which ultimately went under.
Bullock told the Reformer the town received a Community Development Block Grant and made the money available to the MECD, which in turn loaned it out to Tri-State Firearms. The local business agreed to use the funds to expand and hire new employees.
"That's the way that these funds have to go. Because they're federal funds they can't directly benefit a privately-owned business," she said after the public hearing at Hinsdale Town Hall.
Bullock said Tri-State, once at 243 Monument Road, took on the project of installing a firing range, partially funded by the grant money. The project consisted of sub-granting funds to the MEDC, which provided a loan to Tri-State Firearms, LLC, toward the purchase of equipment.
"The firing range was installed and the business, before they could reach their job creation goals, went under," Bullock told the Reformer. "I believe it went bankrupt.
"It's taken a while to kind of sort out what
Bullock said she spoke to the Board of Selectmen because the town is technically the grantee.
Selectman Mike Darcy, acting as chairman in John Smith's absence, told the Reformer that MEDC suffered a sizable loss in the project. He also said a small portion of the grant had been appropriated so the selectmen could conduct a tax evaluation on the Tri-State Firearms building. Bullock said there is about $2,000 available to the board.
The board then held a public hearing regarding a proposed change to the town's traffic control ordinance. The only suggested edit is to add the alleyway surrounding Town Hall to the list of spots that no individual besides the operator of an emergency vehicle can park.
When a woman in the audience asked why the change was being proposed, Town Administrator Jill Collins and Smith, who arrived after the first hearing, said it was a safety issue.
Domenic Poli can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 802-254-2311, ext. 277.