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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 2, 2004

GOVERNOR BLAGOJEVICH ANNOUNCES NEARLY $4 MILLION IN OPPORTUNITY RETURNS FUNDING FOR CRITICAL CENTRAL REGION INFRASTRUCTURE IMPROVEMENTS

SPRINGFIELD – Governor Rod Blagojevich today announced nearly $4 million in funding for new sanitation and water drainage improvement projects in the Central region.  These key initiatives will improve the health and quality of life of Central region residents, as well as provide necessary infrastructure for economic growth.  This aggressive effort to improve the quality of infrastructure and public facilities will be a major theme of the Governor’s Opportunity Returns initiative for the Central region, his comprehensive, pro-active plan for restoring economic opportunity to the area, which will be announced soon.
 
“The most important thing we can do for the Central region is to create new jobs,” said Governor Blagojevich.  “Water and sanitation improvements might not be the most exciting projects, but they are vital to the growth and expansion of the Central Illinois economy.  By focusing locally, we will bring jobs and opportunity to the Central region, one person, one company, and one community at a time.”
 
The funds for this initiative are part of the Community Development Assistance Program (CDAP), a federally-funded grant program that assists Illinois communities by providing grants to local governments to help them in financing economic development, public facilities and housing rehabilitation projects.  The program is targeted to assist low-to-moderate income people by creating job opportunities and improving the quality of their living environment.  The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity administers the program.
 
These CDAP initiatives address a crucial need for the region.  Communities with established infrastructure are under constant pressure to upgrade and rehabilitate their systems to keep up with changing Environmental Protection Agency regulations, changing populations and changing needs.  As more rural water wells are becoming undrinkable, rural water providers assume an even greater importance. 
 
Adequate sewer and water service is also vital to community and economic development.  Without basic infrastructure, communities cannot compete for company relocation and expansion, but with a healthy infrastructure in place, communities can create jobs and prosper. 
 
The Central region’s public facilities improvements are as follows:
 
 
 
 
Total: $3,861,540
Location
Type
Description
Cost ($)
Village of Eldred, Greene County
Public Facilities
Construct Water Line
105,000
City of Roodhouse, Green County
Design Engineering
Design Water Supply System
170,440
 
Bunker Hill Township, Macoupin County
Public Facilities
Construct elevated water storage tank, water lines
350,000
Village of Royal Lakes, Macoupin County
Public Facilities
Construct new water tower
210,000
Village of Wilsonville, Macoupin County
Public Facilities
Repair sanitary sewer system
120,000
Village of Ohlman, Montgomery County
Design Engineering
Design water distribution system
56,100
Village of Manchester, Scott County
Public Facilities
Construct new water main
350,000
Scott County
Public Facilities
Construct water distribution system
350,000
Village of Findlay, Shelby County
Public Facilities
Construct wastewater treatment system
400,000
Ash Grove Township, Shelby County
Public Facilities
Construct rural water extension,
Lincoln Prairie Water District
350,000
Clarksburg Township,
Shelby County
Public Facilities
Construct rural water extension,
Lincoln Prairie Water District
350,000
Richland Township, Shelby County
Public Facilities
Construct rural water extension,
Lincoln Prairie Water District
350,000
Windsor Township
Shelby County
Public Facilities
Construct water system expansion,
Lincoln Prairie Water District
350,000
City of Shelbyville,
Shelby County
Public Facilities
Construct sewer system improvements
350,000
                                                                              Total:                        3,861,540       
 
 
“Everyone who lives or works in Central Illinois stands to benefit from the kind of upgrades these grants will support,” said Jack Lavin, Director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.  “People will access better water and sanitation at home, and companies will be more likely to invest in the region if the infrastructure exists to support them.”
 
The Opportunity Returns regional economic development plan is the most aggressive, comprehensive approach to creating jobs in Illinois’ history.  Since a one-size-fits-all approach to economic development just doesn’t work, the Governor has divided the state into 10 regions – finding areas with common economic strengths and needs, and developing a plan with specific actions for each region.  This grassroots effort is a product of significant outreach over several months with business, civic and labor leaders, and elected officials.  Opportunity Returns contains tangible actions to make each region more accessible, more marketable, more entrepreneurial and more attractive to business.
 
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