Federal legislators joined Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour last week to announce that $200 million in federal funds is set aside for major recovery projects in Hancock County – ground zero for the destructive force of Hurricane Katrina.
U.S. Senator Roger Wicker and U.S. Rep. Gene Taylor
The funds, made available under the Community Development Block Grant program, would help rebuild the Hancock County Jail, finance extensive renovation of downtown Bay St. Louis and four-lane portions of Highway 603.
Other projects, such as the Valena C. Jones Facility/Boys and Girls Club, Waveland Little League Fields, Bay St. Louis Arts and Cultural Center, and the Pearlington Library and Gym, will also be eligible to apply, along with water/sewer projects, community centers, and rebuilding work at volunteer fire and rescue facilities around the county.
Barbour said an action plan will be filed seeking the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s approval for the funding, a necessary step in the process. He said he expects HUD to approve the plan.
“Hancock County sustained a significant loss of housing and infrastructure as well as losing nearly all its public facilities, so it is rightly known as ‘ground zero’ for Hurricane Katrina. By designating this money we’re ensuring that even our hardest hit areas, like Waveland and Bay St. Louis, get the resources necessary to rebuild bigger and better than ever,” Barbour said.
Source: Office of the Governor of Mississippi
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