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UPDATE 5/1: The West City Council will announce on Thursday that most of the private donations collected since the April 17 fertilizer plant blast will be streamlinedthrough the Waco Foundation, a non-profit that already serves McLennan County.

More details will be announced Thursday afternoon.


WEST, Texas As donations continue to funnel into the small Central Texas town of West, city leaders are beginning to process the donations and set up a way to distribute some of the money.

The city plans to establish a corporate foundation, with a board, a committee, and an executive.

Wednesday morning, the city council could vote on also allowing an already existing group, the Waco Foundation, to manage part of the donation money.

Donations have been streaming into the town's two main banks.

For example, the Czech Stop Bakery off Interstate 35 in West said it collected more than $60,000 in donations that it handed over to the fund at Pointwest Bank.

Other groups have been collecting money, too.

The West, Texas Disaster Relief Fund has raised about $239,000, according to the Waco Foundation, which started the fund.

Baylor University has a fund which has collected close to $190,000.

A fundraiser organized by the Houston Texans came out at about $25,000.

A benefit concert held over the weekend in Waco featuring local musicians pulled in $67,000. Organizers of the event will present a giant check to the City Council on Thursday morning.

West Mayor Tommy Muska told News 8 this week that the corporate foundation will hopefully manage some of the money and goods while the Waco Foundation would manage some of the donations too.

Meetings were being held with other local and state officials so that the foundation's application process could be fast-tracked.

The hope is that the hundreds of homeowners affected by the explosion on April 17 can apply for help within weeks, not months.

E-mail tunger@wfaa.com

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