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October 7, 2016
Governor awards Community Development Block Grant to create, retain jobs in Jackson County

MONTGOMERY— Gov. Robert Bentley has awarded a $225,000 Community Development Block Grant to help create and retain jobs at three businesses located in Jackson County’s Goosepond Industrial Park.

The grant to the Jackson County Commission will upgrade public water service at the industrial park located off of Alabama Highway 79, benefiting three companies that have been located there for many years: BL Fabricators, Southeastern Metals and Telko Enterprises. All three businesses are in the metal fabrication business.

With the water upgrades increasing their capabilities, the businesses expect to retain 51 jobs and create 26 new jobs. County officials said the water upgrades will also make the industrial park more attractive to future industries.

“Creating and retaining jobs for Alabamians will always be a top priority of my administration, and this project will mean new opportunities in Jackson County,” Bentley said. “I commend the efforts of local leaders to improve the water service at this location which will help existing businesses expand and may serve to attract new employers in the future.”

The industrial park was built in the 1960s to house the Revere Copper and Brass aluminum manufacturing plant. The park was later divided into sections occupied by the three metal fabrication businesses and some trucking companies. County officials said the original water mains have deteriorated significantly, leading to poor water quality and unusable fire hydrants.

The project will install 5,780 feet of new water mains, six new fire hydrants and related equipment to provide a reliable, consistent supply of water to help the companies sustain and expand their current operations, creating job opportunities.

The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grant from funds made available by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. ADECA administers an array of programs supporting law enforcement and traffic safety, economic development, energy conservation, workforce development, water resource management and recreation development.

“The CDBG program is one of the most important ways ADECA partners with local leaders to create jobs and complete projects that improve the lives of residents,” ADECA Director Jim Byard Jr. said. “Job retention is important to the economy of a community. This project in Jackson County is a great example of how these partnerships are beneficial for everyone.”

Bentley informed Matthew Hodges, chairman of the County Commission, that he had approved the grant. Local matching funds of $95,800 will supplement the award.

Contact Mike Presley or Jennifer Ardis

For more information, visit:  http://www.adeca.alabama.gov/