Coaldale Fire Chief Richard Marek asked for funds from the county's Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) fund for repairing the roof on the borough's fire house.

The request was made at a public hearing called by the Schuylkill County Commissioners Wednesday at the courthouse in Pottsville.

Commissioner Mantura Gallagher, chairman of the board, announced the purpose of the public hearing was to provide an opportunity for citizens to comment on the community development and housing needs of the county which can be funded through the CDBG program.

The county anticipates receiving $400,000 this year from the Pennsylvania Small Communities Program for fiscal year 2010.

In making the appeal for funding, Marek told the commissioners the fire house is 33 years old and although maintenance has been provided since it was built in 1977, the roof is in disrepair and must be replaced.

Also appearing was Councilman John J. Merse, of Tremont, who put in a bid for funds to raze a dilapidated building, repair the parking lot serving the senior center, a child day care and children and youth agency; and also for money toward rebuilding a bridge which links one half of the borough to the other half.

Gallagher said their requests will be given full consideration but the commissioners have requests from many other municipalities and it must be decided which needs immediate funding. Applications are being accepted until Nov. 24 this year

The range of eligible activities include acquisition of property, resale expenses, public improvements such as streets, curbs, sidewalks, storm and sanitary sewers, water lines, parks, community centers, senior centers, parking lots, fire stations, demolition of dilapidated buildings, renovations of closed school buildings and buildings occupied by low and moderate income families, historical preservation, homeownership assistance, lead based paint hazard evaluation and reduction and to assist nonprofit organizations to undertake economic development and neighborhood activities.

Commissioners Gallagher and Frank Staudenmeier presided. Commissioner Frank McAndrew was absent. Mark Scarbinsky, county administrator, and Tom Gallagher, compliance officer, participated.