Mt. Pleasant home-supplies depot gets $540K grant
By Rachel Basinger
Published: Thursday, Dec. 26, 2013, 1:31 a.m.
During the next three years, Westmoreland Community Action will be able to add 27 employees to its eco-friendly Shop Demo Depot in Mt. Pleasant.
Rep. Tim Murphy, R-Upper St. Clair, recently presented a check for $540,000 to Westmoreland Community Action officials from the Community Economic Development grant program through the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Community Services.
Shop Demo Depot is a non-profit business established by Westmoreland Community Action as a way to reduce landfill waste of construction materials by promoting the resale and reuse of goods — from furniture to light fixtures — while financially supporting Community Action initiatives that help those in need.
Jack Brown, director of community services for Westmoreland Community Action as well as the general manager for Shop Demo Depot, said this was the third year the organization applied for the grant. He found out on Sept. 30 that it had been chosen as a recipient.
“We were relieved when we found it because it's a lot of work to put an application like this together,” he said. “We just kept refining it until we got it right.”
Brown added that only about 20 other entities across the nation received the grant this year.
“Receiving a grant like this is amazing,” he said. “This is our first real social enterprise that allows us to do charity by doing business. It provides jobs and training and generates revenue to fund programs through community action.”
Brown said Murphy was instrumental in helping the organization to receive the grant.
“We work with his office with a lot of things, and they are always nice to work with and very accomodating,” he said. “They're open-minded and always there for us when we need something.”
Lou Lazzaro, deputy chief of staff for Murphy, said this is something that's good for the community because it gives consumers the opportunity to buy discounted, quality products and establishes jobs.
Joe Bauer, president of Mt. Pleasant Borough Council, said the job creation is key.
“It can put some people in town who are out of work into a paying job,” he said. “Those residents who might not be able to travel far can walk to work with this kind of opportunity.”
Mt. Pleasant Borough Mayor Gerald Lucia said it also helps consumers.
“With a business of this nature, people can buy and save money here — especially in these challenging economic times,” he said.
Shawn Conway of Sen. Pat Toomey's office said Toomey was happy to send in a letter of support for the grant application.
“The senator is happy to be involved with such a great organization,” he said.
Rachel Basinger is a contributing writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Connellsville starting early planning for Christmas
- Juveniles waive charges to Fayette court in Connellsville Township assault/robbery
- Police seek German Township assailant
- Mt. Pleasant man charged in 2 Connellsville robberies
- Falcon band performs at Disney World
- Good Friday, Easter Sunday programs planned in Scottdale
- County Line Church to hold live Crucifixion re-enactment
- Dawson continues Palm Sunday tradition
- Brush fire season keeps Fayette firefighters busy
- Attorney says Fayette County officials’ policy on recording goes against state law
- Connellsville area benefits from tourism grant program