Thursday, July 14, 2005
Michael Shore, MEDC
Federal Funds Support State Public Works Initiative
Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced a $128,188 grant that will enable the city of Caspian to make improvements to its public sewer system as part of the Michigan Public Works Program. A federal Community Development Block Grant being made available through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation will back the project, which is expected to create new economic opportunities for the Upper Peninsula community.
"Helping our communities attract new businesses strengthens Michigan's economy," Granholm said. "Public works improvements will help cities like Caspian support existing businesses and attract new developments."
Improvements will include the replacement of approximately 1,400 linear feet of deteriorating sanitary sewer. The city will contribute $20,000 in support of the project.
"The people of Caspian are extremely pleased about this grant for main sanitary sewer line improvements," Caspian City Manager Rich Frighetto said. "Most of the main sanitary sewer lines throughout the city will need to be replaced in the years ahead, as was the case with the water lines a few years back. This will be the first step of a somewhat long process, and is being made available and possible through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation's backing of the project."
Caspian was one of 33 Michigan communities announced in February to receive Michigan Public Works funding, one part of the Governor's $30 million, two-pronged Grow Michigan Communities Initiative that also includes funding for Michigan's Downtowns and Gateways. The MEDC administers the state's Community Development Block Grant funds received from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
These funds are used to provide grants and loans to eligible counties, cities, villages and townships-typically those with populations less than 50,000-for economic development, community development and housing projects. Larger communities receive block grant funds directly from the federal government.
The MEDC is able to award approximately $50 million in federal CDBG funds each year. There are 1,655 local governments within the state eligible to apply for these funds. Projects are approved contingent upon compliance with state and federal requirements.
"CDBG is an excellent resource for Michigan's smaller communities," MEDC President and CEO Don Jakeway said. "The funding helps local leaders address the high cost of providing sufficient infrastructure to support growth."
In her 2005 State of the State address, Granholm emphasized the importance of making Michigan a global economic powerhouse in the 21st century. Since January 2005 the Governor and the MEDC announced the creation or retention of more than 53,000 jobs as a result of targeted assistance provided by the MEDC.
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, a partnership between the state and local communities, promotes smart economic growth by developing strategies and providing services to create and retain good jobs and a high quality of life.