January 09, 2002 11:00 pm

ENTERPRISE Another round of lottery grant money is scheduled to be distributed by the Northeast Oregon Alliance, with the amount of money dependent on how much the Legislature releases at its special session late this month or in early February.

The money is part of the three-county Regional Investment Program, said Sara Miller of NEOA.

NEOA will hold meetings later this month in Union, Wallowa and Umatilla counties to hear from applicants who have already submitted their paperwork for the grants.

The requests from 24 applicants total $1,459,526, said Miller, but this distribution could be as small as a total of $300,000.

If the Legislature reduces our lottery funds further than the $1.14 million total it had earmarked for this area for a two-year period, I dont know what our board will do, Miller said.

Originally, the NEOA board had set up three different programs, including a marketing fund and a grant fund, and planned to distribute the remaining $1.2 million in four different rounds.

The meetings to hear applicants for this round are Jan. 23 in Enterprise and Jan. 29 in La Grande and Pendleton. After hearing from the applicants, the board will have to wait on the Legislature before deciding what to do.

Eight projects are seeking grants of $100,000 each. Here is a brief look at each and what the company is seeking funds to do:

Circle C. Equipment, Hermiston. Expansion. Previously received a grant.

Eastern Oregon Net Incorporated. Equipment purchase. Turned down on three previous applications.

City of La Grande. To establish a low-interest revolving loan fund to refurbish buildings in the downtown historical district. The city would match it with $100,000 of its own.

Pacific Custom Aircraft, at Union County Airport. Wants to offer workshops for people who purchase the companys airplane kits.

Hermiston Tire and Auto. To upgrade building, remodel restrooms, telephone system and training. Would provide a match of $22,000.

Haus Barhyte Inc., Milton-Freewater. Mostly for a storage area, which would allow the company to buy directly from mustard seed growers, resulting in more profit for the growers.

Lisas Pizza and Video, North Powder (doing business as North Powder Cafe and Truck Stop). Add 1,200 square feet to dining space. Would match with $35,000.

North Powder Seed Processing. Would modify seed-cleaning facility so it could produce locally labeled feed products.

Among other requests are $75,000 by Wallowa Lake Elk Ranch Inc. (Harold Amidon) to build a visitors center for the proposed ranch east of Joseph on the Imnaha Highway. The company would have six adult elk the first year with 100 additional in following years. An eight-foot fence would be constructed around 52 acres of the 120-acre site. It is a $1.1 million project.

Another request for $75,000 comes from the Milton-Freewater Library Foundation to replace an 83-year-old building, provide furniture and computer equipment.

Ray Linker, The Observer

You can reach Ray Linker at 541-963-3161 or via e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it