The Town Council voted unanimously Tuesday to approve the disbursement of $500,000 from the town treasury to the Winthrop Foundation, which will now be able to move forward in its grant distribution process.
The funds are a part of a $2.5 million appropriation ($500,000 per year for five year) from Massport and will be distributed to local organization and Winthrop residents who will be required to submit grant applications to the Foundation and then be approved by a majority or two-thirds of the Foundation’s seven members.
“We have started the process,” said Foundation Chair Russell Sanford, who was present at Tuesday’s special meeting of the Council. “We have hired an accountant, we’re hiring an administrator, and we’re going to launch a website.”
Sanford said groups and residents will be eligible for “major” and “minor” grants in several monetary denominations. Some of the grant categories to be considered are historical, educational, drama, and athletics.
The grants will no doubt be difference makers for local groups. A Winthrop sports team needing new uniforms or equipment, a drama club needing funding for expenses to travel to a competition, or the Council on Aging looking to defray expenses for a trip for seniors – those are just a few of the examples cited by Sanford.
“I’m pleased that the Council has approved this key step in the process and we can move forward in our role,” said Sanford. “It allows us as trustees to be able to disburse the money sooner than later.”
Sanford expects that local groups and residents will be able to begin submitting applications for grants by the end of the year.
“We have a great group of trustees, all well- known, credible, ethical people,” said Sanford.
Joining Sanford on the Foundation’s board of trustees are Police Chief Terence Delehanty, secretary Vincent Crossman, treasurer Jeffrey Turco, Brian Leslie, School Committee member Gus Martucci and Vasili Mallios.