oday, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $1.5 million grant to Conway County Levee District 6, Morrilton, Arkansas, to help construct and install a permanent stormwater pump station to mitigate flood risks in the Oppelo Bottoms industrial area. The EDA grant, to be matched with $375,000 in local funds, is expected to retain 400 jobs and generate $30 million in private investment.
“President Trump is working every day to improve our country’s infrastructure, which in turn facilitates job creation and success,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “This stormwater pump station will provide Conway County with the infrastructure needed to support pre-existing businesses and new potential business growth.”
“In 2019, the Arkansas River flooded to the highest level in its history, causing major disruptions to businesses and revealing problems in the levees system,” said Dana Gartzke, Performing the Delegated Duties of the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “The infrastructure improvements supported by this EDA grant will address the levee issues with new stormwater pumps and will result in a more resilient regional economy.”
“Flooding along the Arkansas River in 2019 demonstrated the need for infrastructure that’s efficient and functions properly in order to preserve property and protect safety,” said Senator John Boozman. “I applaud the EDA and the Trump Administration for making this investment in Conway County’s mitigation project that will ultimately safeguard the economic development that has already occurred and provide confidence for growth into the future.”
“Over the past several years, Arkansas has experienced historic flooding which has caused extensive damage throughout our state,” said Congressman French Hill (AR-02). “I applaud the Trump Administration for recognizing the need to begin the process of recovery and rebuilding. This $1.5 million grant will help protect our region from future flooding, retain jobs in Conway County, and generate private investment in central Arkansas.”
This project was made possible by the regional planning efforts led by the West Central Arkansas Planning and Development District (WCAPDD), which EDA funds to help bring together the public and private sectors to create an economic development roadmap to strengthen the regional economy, support private capital investment, and create jobs.
About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation’s regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.