The State Controlling Board has approved the release of funding for several Southeast Ohio initiatives, State Representative Jay Edwards recently announced.

Among the projects is $7.3 million for cabin improvements at three state parks, including Lake Hope.

The Lake Hope State Park project involves the renovation of 25 cabins. Work will include plumbing fixtures, HVAC equipment, insulation, flooring, electrical and structural and building exterior work as needed.

Located within the Zaleski State Forest in Vinton County, Lake Hope State Park includes a variety of outdoor activities. It has a popular campground, complete with cabins. The 66 cabins were constructed between 1948 and 1978.

Edwards (R-Nelsonville) said Lake Hope and Zaleski State Forest are popular destinations for area residents and attract visitors from around Ohio and beyond.

“This is an important project that maintains the state’s investment at Lake Hope and supports tourism in the region, which is an important part of our economy,” Edwards said.

The State Controlling Board also:

Approved the release of $411,000 to replace a pair of air handlers at Alden Library. The current air handlers are original to the building, which opened in 1969, and are unable to maintain proper humidity and temperature.

Approved renewing a contract with Ohio Health Physicians Group for physician services at Appalachian Behavioral Healthcare in Athens. The amount is $253,000 in both fiscal year 2022 and fiscal year 2023.