OXFORD — Voters approved a Community Development Block Grant application that will be used by Valley View Orchard Pies to help with equipment and create two new jobs.

About 20 residents who attended a special town meeting May 2 approved the CDBG Economic Development Program and authorized the town officials to accept the proposed $100,000 grant fund and implement the necessary measures to use the funds, if the Department of Economic and Community Development approves the application.

Cynthia Johnston, president of Valley View Orchard Pies and a retired accountant, and three family members bought the 30-year-old company last year and moved it from Hebron to Oxford over the winter into a leased building on Madison Avenue, expanding the space from 2,000 square feet to 15,000 square feet.

The company hopes to buy the building in the fall.

The owner told the Sun Media Group that the grant funds will help with refrigeration, heat and humidity control, and creating two new jobs.

The Special Town Meeting action also requires that should the National Objective of the CDBG program not be met all CDBG funds must be repaid to the State of Maine CDBG program.

The wholesale business sells 20 types of pie, tea cakes and whoopie pies, to vendors in Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Future plans call for a new retail outlet store and the ability to ship pies nationwide.

Town Manager Butch Asselin told voters during a brief public hearing prior to the vote that the town would not have any cost unless a penalty was charged due to Valley View not fulfilling the employment requirements written in the grant.

Several residents praised the town’s support of the local businesses.


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