CARBONDALE – Continuing his efforts to spur economic development in every region of the state, Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today awarded nearly $1 million in grants to make necessary improvements to alleviate the potential of future flooding in residential areas of Alexander and Union counties. The grants are part of the Community Development Assistance Program’s new Flexible Opportunity Grant Program component, which is designed to provide funding to meet unique community concerns and urgent or critical needs.
“The State worked closely with FEMA over the last few months to address the immediate needs our communities faced following the June flooding. Our priority now turns to ensuring long-term recovery of the state, including enhancing our ability to recover from future disasters. These grants are one example of our efforts and will help alleviate future flooding problems in Southern Illinois,” said Governor Blagojevich.
Two grants, each totaling nearly $500,000, have been awarded to Alexander County and Union County to make necessary improvements to ditches that will assist in alleviating future potential flooding of local residential and business areas.
“We must make critical investments like these in our region’s infrastructure in order to build stronger, more vibrant communities that will also help grow our local economy and create good new jobs,” State Senator Gary Forby (D-Benton) said.
“Helping improve our infrastructure against potentially damaging flooding is a sound investment for our community's hardworking families. Governor Blagojevich is demonstrating why a grassroots approach to economic development is so important,” State Representative Brandon Phelps (D-Harrisburg) said.
“These investments are an important step in making sure that Southern Illinois remains not only a safe place to live, but also a great place to invest and conduct business. Through the Community Development Assistance Program we are assisting with key improvements that will support future economic development in this area, thus creating more opportunities for jobs in the region. I applaud Senator Forby and Representative Phelps for their leadership and vision in this area,” Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) Director Jack Lavin said.
This funding is part of the Community Development Assistance Program (CDAP), a federally-funded grant program that assists Illinois communities by providing grants to local governments, which are designed to help finance economic development, public infrastructure, housing rehabilitation and other significant projects. The program is administered through DCEO, and effectively targets and assists low-to-moderate income people by creating job opportunities, bolstering local economies and otherwise improving the quality of life of Illinois residents.