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Cole County could limit funding for non-profit organizations

Cole County commissioners Tuesday discussed capping the amount of funding for non-profit organizations like Salute to America and Habitat for Humanity.

Times are tight for many people right now, but Cole County has been fairly insulated from money woes in recent years.

However, as commissioners are looking to next year’s budget, some things could be on the chopping block, and the first thing to go could be funding for local charities.

Presiding Commissioner Sam Bushman said there are more groups than ever before looking for help. Times are tough and charities and non-profits are feeling the pinch as donations dry up.

The county has always been a fallback for these organizations when they need a helping hand, but all good things must come to an end, and the county is looking for ways to be more frugal with taxpayer dollars, meaning a cap for county donations.

“The number just keeps growing and we want to help them all, but we only have so much money to do it with,” said Bushman.

Last year, the county gave out about $40,000 to area non-profits. Bushman said some of them are economic drivers and have impacts on the community. Salute to America is one of those organizations.

Bushman told ABC 17 News the most any one group gets is about $10,000.

He favors a cap, saying they can help more people.

“We only have so much money to spend so that’s where the cap comes in. If we have 50 entities asking for money and we have $50,000 to do it, you know, that’s what you can do,” said Bushman.

At this point, there’s no timeframe for when we might know if commissioners will approve a cap.

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