Substantial grant money designated to local communities

Substantial grant money designated to local communities

Many communities in Region 8 are expected to receive substantial amounts of money to help with their infrastructure and economy.

The Delta Regional Authority (DRA) made the announcement on Tuesday. The group, along with its partners, said new investments have reached $28.5 million in Arkansas.

Here are the following projects from Northeast Arkansas:

  • FORREST CITY: Industrial Park Transportation Improvements. DRA Investment: $225,000. Total Investment: $2,225,000. DRA funds will be used to help match an Economic Development Administration (EDA) grant and local funding to improve the park’s road network and build a rail spur. The improvements will support increased truck traffic and allow for a new mode of transportation for businesses that are projected to create more than 800 new jobs.
  • WYNNE: Support Growth of Matthews Ridgeway Farms. DRA Investment: $225,000. Total Investment: $8,781,500. This will support a gap investment for the processing, packaging and distribution equipment needed to enhance business growth at Matthews Ridgeway Farms. The company would like to bring in-house processing, packaging, storage and distribution of Arkansas-grown sweet potatoes, a process now performed outside of the state by third-party providers. Over 80% of all Matthews Ridgeway sweet potato growing is now distributed outside the state of Arkansas, purchased by large food chains and sellers. This project will increase the volume of fully processed and FDA approved packaging and distribution of sweet potatoes.
  • TRUMANN: Support Growth of Manufacturing Business. DRA Investment: $225,000. Total Investment: $513,383.  This investment will support a partnership agreement between the City of Trumann, DRA, and a private company to help a manufacturing venture increase community capacity, stimulate economic development and provide job creation.
  • NEWPORT: Levee Pump Replacement for Flood Control. DRA Investment: $200,000. Total Investment: $240,000. This project will fund the replacement of the levee pump that serves the north side of Newport and keeps flood waters away from homes and businesses. The replacement of the pump will protect about 525 households from flood waters and businesses that employ about 300 local residents.
  • IMBODEN: Disaster Training Facility. DRA Investment: $150,000. Total Investment: $6,932,675. DRA’s investment will aid in developing a water rescue training zone at the facility. This facility is a collaboration among Arkansas State University, the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management, the City of Imboden, Lawrence County, and local and regional businesses. Water rescue is one of the more pressing disaster-response problems in Arkansas. It is the most common problem associated with disasters in the state, yet it is the least addressed in current disaster training.

DRA was established in 2000 by Congress as a federal-state partnership to help create jobs and build communities across eight states.

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