August 13, 2020

EDA: $824,112 Invested to Make Critical Infrastructure Improvements to Protect from Future Floods Near Opportunity Zone in SC

Today, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $824,112 grant to the town of Cheraw, South Carolina, to make water infrastructure improvements needed to protect businesses from future floods and natural disasters. The EDA grant project, to be located near a Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Opportunity Zone, will be matched with $206,028 in local investment.

“Ensuring businesses have adequate infrastructure in place to protect their assets and support future economic growth is vital,” said Dana Gartzke, Performing the Delegated Duties of the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “Enhancing the resiliency of Cheraw’s water system following damage caused by Hurricane Florence will help businesses stay open after flood events, and the nearby Opportunity Zone will incentivize businesses to invest in the area and reinvigorate the local economy.”

Cheraw was severely impacted by heavy rains resulting from Hurricane Florence in 2018. This water infrastructure investment will assist with disaster recovery and resiliency efforts.

This project was made possible by the regional planning efforts led by the Pee Dee Council of Governments, which EDA funds to 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.

The funding announced today goes to one of Washington’s 139 Opportunity Zones. Created by President Donald J. Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017Opportunity Zones are spurring economic development in economically-distressed communities nationwide. In June 2019, EDA added Opportunity Zones as an Investment Priority, which increases the number of catalytic Opportunity Zone-related projects that EDA can fund to fuel greater public investment in these areas. To learn more about the Commerce Department’s work in Opportunity Zones, please visit EDA’s Opportunity Zones webpage. To learn more about the Opportunity Zone program, see the Opportunity Now resources webpage. To learn more about Opportunity Zone best practices, see the recently released White House Opportunity and Revitalization Council Report (PDF) to President Trump.

This project is funded by the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019 (Pub. L. 116-20) (PDF), which provided EDA with $600 million in additional Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) Program (PDF) funds for disaster relief and recovery for areas affected by Hurricanes Florence, Michael, and Lane, Typhoons Yutu and Mangkhut, wildfires, volcanic eruptions, and other major natural disasters occurring in calendar year 2018, and tornadoes and floods occurring in calendar year 2019, under the Robert T. Stafford Act. Please visit EDA’s Disaster Supplemental webpage.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (
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.

This post was originally published here.