Wednesday was a day of giving for York County commissioners.

The board allocated more than $60,000 for improvements to Indian Steps Museum in Lower Chanceford Township and three York City parks used by York City Little League.

Commissioners also put $40,000 toward a partnership between the York County Area Agency on Aging and county-based volunteer group Servants Inc.

Indian Steps: Commissioners allocated $32,500 for the Indian Steps project, meeting the "cash-match" requirements of a recently submitted planning grant. They approved $30,000 for the York City parks work.

Former commissioner Doug Kilgore made the Indian Steps request during public comment.

The museum houses a collection of Native American artifacts and is a popular site for field trips, he said.

"A lot of York Countians have a history of being to Indian Steps," Kilgore said.

On behalf of the Conservation Society of York County, which operates the museum, he asked commissioners to match the grant because Indian Steps hasn't been upgraded since 1940.

That means it needs some renovations, from public restrooms to parking to creating accessways for people with disabilities, Kilgore said.

Shale funds: Commissioner Doug Hoke said he believes the project matches the requirements of Marcellus Legacy Fund distribution, as the money must go toward recreation, beautification or conservation.

The Conservation Society does not receive state or federal funding to operate the museum. Donations, fees and gift shop revenues support its operation.


And $30,000 will go toward the replacement of bleachers and improvements at Allen Park, Odeon Park and the Memorial Park complex in York City.

The funds will be distributed evenly from 2014 to 2016.

"I think it's a useful purpose for these Marcellus Shale funds," Hoke said.

Helping out: As part of its goal of empowering older adults, the aging agency wants them to be safe in their own homes, said director Dianna Benaknin.

So it partnered with Servants, which has volunteers install ramps, repair bathrooms and provide safe environments in seniors' homes, she said.

The organization provides the labor for free and bills for materials, so Benaknin requested $40,000 in funding for the period of April 1 through June 30.

"I look at it as being the start of a great and growing relationship," she said.

Servants provided help for 110 homes last year, said executive director Trent Davis.

"The only thing that holds us back is funding for building materials," he said.

The organization is working through a waiting list of homeowners now, but seniors can call the aging agency at 717-771-9610 to get a referral for the service.

- Reach Mollie Durkin at