Mississippi Towns and Counties to Split $41M in Disaster Recovery Grants

April 17, 2008

More than $41 million in disaster recovery grants is being awarded to 39 Mississippi counties and municipalities for individual projects involving Hurricane Katrina disaster recovery.

Gov. Haley Barbour and the Mississippi Development Authority said the funding package will touch most of Mississippi’s disaster declared counties, and it will be used for everything from repairing water and drainage systems, to environmental mitigation to rebuilding public buildings.

The projects are funded through Mississippi’s $5.48 billion federal Katrina recovery package, composed entirely of flexible Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) monies, which may be used for a variety of public infrastructure purposes.

“These are projects fitting very well into the CDBG program’s traditional scope of work,” said Gray Swoope, MDA Executive Director. “MDA worked closely with mayors, county supervisors and other local officials to ensure their project proposals would be well planned and ultimately qualify for federal CDBG funds. This included extensive documentation and site visits to verify that each proposal is directly linked to Katrina recovery.”

As a result, 39 out of 49 total applications passed all the federal CDBG requirements. Each of the cities and counties impacted by this package are in the Gulf Opportunity Zone or “GO Zone,” a federally defined area eligible for special tax breaks and supplemental federal investment designed to promote and hasten hurricane recovery.

Of the almost $5.5 billion federal Katrina recovery CDBG package approved for Mississippi, more than $2.3 billion is appropriated specifically for community revitalization projects similar to these, with the rest primarily allocated to various housing recovery programs.

Source: Office of the Governor of Mississippi

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