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Commissioners adopt county’s 2022 budget

Walters recognized for Hoopes School preservation

Sentinel photo by BRADLEY KREITZER Clifford Walters, second from right, receives a proclamation in honor of his preservation of the Hoopes School in Derry Township. Pictured with Walters are, from left, Mifflin County Commissioners Kevin Kodish, Rob Postal and Mark Sunderland.

LEWISTOWN — During their regular business meeting Thursday, the Mifflin County Commissioners finished out the year with the final approval of the county’s 2022 budget. With an approximately $4,200,000 decrease for last year’s budget, the 2022 budget totals $32,050,000 and does not include a tax increase.

According to commissioners, one of the reasons for the budget reduction is the completion of the Mifflin County Annex renovations. The $3.3 million project was included in the 2021 budget, and the county will receive a $1.5 million RACP grant through the state for this project.

Another reason for the reduction is an overall decrease of state grant-related planning projects by approximately $350,000.

This decrease is attributed to the completion and near completion of the Reedsville Streetscape Project.

The Mifflin County Planning Department continues with the extension of the Juniata River Trail that received support from two state-level grants.

Also during the meeting, the commissioners issued a proclamation honoring Clifford G. Walters for his lifelong preservation of the Hoopes School in Derry Township.

According to the proclamation, the one-room school house was built in 1873 and was used as such until 1958.

Walters purchased the building in 1974, and “through decades of dedication and personal expense, created a living museum reflecting rural education in Mifflin County in the 19th and 20th centuries.”

The school has been operating as a living museum annually since Walters first opened it’s doors to the public on July 4, 1976.

The proclamation also states that Walters donated the property, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, to the Mifflin County Historical Society in a desire to see Hoopes School preserved for future generations.

ìI am very thankful to the board for this honor and to the historical society for protecting the property,” Walters said.

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