Brundidge seeks new funds for local needs

Published 10:06 pm Tuesday, February 3, 2009

After nearly completing a two-year drainage and demolition project in Brundidge, the city is gearing up to seek funds for new local needs.

A $473,000 Community Block Development Grant from the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs, awarded in 2007, has allowed the city to repair drainage problems on Hardshell Road and McGuire Street. In addition, the city has also cleaned up neighborhoods through the demolition of 13 dilapidated homes through the town.

In a public hearing Tuesday, the council welcomed community comments as part of closing this project and discussed possible projects for the next grant period, which begins in April.

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No local residents had anything to say about the old project, but Grant Consultant Susan Monroe, who works with Roth, McHugh and Associates, offered several areas Brundidge may qualify for funding next year.

Monroe said the city could choose to apply for assistance through a Community Enhancement Fund, which would allot money to projects like the senior center, the fire department or possibly even the library. Or, the city could apply for a different type of money for things like sewer or street repairs, as well as sidewalks.

The council did not make a decision on which of the two areas they will seek assistance.

In the last grant, the council had to match $73,000 for the funds. And, despite hard economic times, City Manager Britt Thomas said the city should be in good shape to do the same if they are awarded new grant money. “Because of the fact it’s not something we would have to give right at the moment (we’d be able to pay it),” Thomas said. “It’s paid for over a 24-month period.”

And Monroe said despite economic times, she feels Brundidge has a good chance of receiving grant money from ADECA next year.

Also in their meeting, the council discussed submitting another proposal to revamp sidewalks from the intersection of South Main Street and Oak Street to Gilmore Road.

Thomas said the Alabama Department of Transportation is looking to grant money for a Transportation Enhancement Project.

This proposal was submitted in 2006 but denied funding. Thomas said it would be good to submit he request again, since it is essentially ready to go.

Council members will discuss reworking the proposal in the next meeting.