Congress approves #036;500,000

Published 12:00 am Friday, October 20, 2000

for Cattlemen’s Park

Staff Report

Oct. 19, 2000 10 PM

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The Pike County Cattleman’s Association is one step away from getting $500,000.

U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced Thursday the Senate approved the appropriations for Pike County.

That $500,000 appropriation was only a small portion of the more than $23.6 million allotted for Alabama projects in the Veterans Affairs/Housing and Urban Development and Independent Agencies Appropriations bill.

"I am very pleased that my colleagues recognized the merits of my funding requests," Shelby said of the bill.

The bill will now go to President Bill Clinton to be signed into law.

And, cattlemen in Pike County will be anxiously awaiting that moment.

Earlier this year, ground was broken on what will be a convention and exposition center at Cattlemen’s Park between Troy and Brundidge on U.S. 231.

The 150-feet by 90-feet facility will have a large meeting room with seating capacity of 1,650, a small conference room, kitchen/concessions area and restroom facilities.

Serving the citizens of Pike County as a multipurpose facility, the center will be available for things, such as livestock and educational events, concerts and gospel singings, trade shows and reunions.

"The completion of this multi-purpose facility in Brundidge, Alabama will allow us to develop tourist and economic activity in the area," Shelby said. "The Pike County Cattleman’s Association has been instrumental in securing this funding."

Mike Griffin, president of the Pike County Cattlemen’s Foundation and county Cattlemen’s Association, said the groundbreaking was a "momentous occasion" after seven years of work.

He said construction of the building is "the culmination of a long effort by the Pike County Cattlemen’s Association to get this project underway" and it is "only the beginning of the fulfillment of the vision that the Pike County Cattlemen’s Association has for this agricultural center."

At the time of the groundbreaking, Griffin said the project had "tremendous" support from state and federal officials and the money approved Thursday is just a small amount of money that has been garnered for the project.

Funds to construct the facility have come from several resources including a $468,000 low-interest loan and a $15,000 grant from the USDA Rural Development.

Another $50,000 has been presented by State Sen. Wendell Mitchell, D-Luverne and State Rep. Alan Boothe, D-Troy.