FARMINGDALE, NY — In his latest column, Farmingdale Village Mayor Ralph Ekstrand discussed grant money for homeowners who need funds for maintenance, beautification of the village, the community’s home-decorating contest, and more.

The village has community development block grant money through Housing Urban and Development that can be used to help homeowners who need assistance with maintenance on their homes. The income-based project would help residents with winterizing their property, from handicap accessibility to new windows, doors, roofing, gutters, and more, according to the village. Interior items potentially covered by the program include boilers, electrical upgrades, handicap items and more. For more information, people can call Barbara Kelly at 516-249-0093, extension 202.

The Residential Rehabilitation Program, administered by the Office of Community Development, was designed to help Farmingdale Village residents of limited income perform necessary upgrades or repairs to their homes. Eligible homes must meet these requirements:

  • Single-family homes located in the Village of Farmingdale

  • House must be the primary residence of the income-eligible owner

  • Total household income may not exceed 80 percent of the current area median income as defined by HUD.

Residents are encouraged to participate in the Farmingdale 2020 Holiday Lights Contest. Vote for your favorite decorated house in the 11735 ZIP code by emailing its address to Trustee Walter Priestley at [email protected]. The top three winners will receive a gift card to a Farmingdale Village business of their choice.

Ekstrand thanked the volunteers who helped beautify the village in time for the holidays.

“It was certainly a different year,” he wrote. “As we all know, COVID-19 has placed many restrictions on gathering. In thinking outside the box, volunteers were asked to decorate wreaths at their homes.”

Wreaths were delivered to volunteers’ homes, and they placed new lights and bows on them. The Department of Public Works then picked up the wreaths and hung them on Main Street.

“A huge thank you to these volunteers!” Ekstrand said. “The Village looks beautiful and brings a little cheer during this COVID-19 pandemic.”

For those who need to replace a couple of flags on the sidewalk in front of their home, the village introduced its Sidewalk Tripping Elimination Program; or STEP. The village will partner with residents to replace up to four flags of the sidewalk. For those interested, you can call Village Hall to be added to the program at516-249-0093.

Ekstrand thanked everyone who donated toys for the village’s annual Marine Toys for Tots collection, as well as everyone who donated to help feed the local needy.

“We truly appreciate everyone’s contributions,” he said.

Trustee Priestley recently visited Farmingdale Adult Daycare to bring some holiday cheer, along with members of the Woman’s Club of Farmingdale and others, to record a holiday video for the seniors. The staff and seniors were visited by Santa, and they listened to Christmas carols and holiday songs by the chorus.

The Farmingdale Chamber of Commerce Annual Holiday Party and swearing-in of officers took place in December with limited attendance and careful safety protocols in place, according to Ekstrand.

“In spite of challenging times, spirits were high and Chamber members are committed to helping Farmingdale businesses and the community,” Ekstrand said. “It was a privilege to MC the event and congratulations to all those installed to the Chamber Board, and all those honored. Thank you to the Chamber of Commerce and to award recipients for all you do! Just a reminder to Shop & Dine local – support the local merchants throughout the holiday season and year-round.”

This article originally appeared on the Farmingdale Patch