NCFL rural communities get money for infrastructure funding

Published: Dec. 20, 2022 at 1:50 PM EST
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCJB) - Rural communities in Florida are getting more than $7.1 million in infrastructure funding, including some North Central Florida communities.

The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) is distributing the money as part of the Rural Infrastructure Fund (RIF) program. The money is given to communities to “facilitate the planning, preparing, and financing of infrastructure projects.”

The City of Lawtey is being allocated $300,000 to complete the first phase of the city’s design effort to upgrade its municipal water distribution system.

Nearly $765,000 is going to Suwannee County to extend sewer infrastructure to support a new hotel and businesses at the I-10 interchange.

The City of Palatka will receive nearly $556,000 to replace aged and failing potable water lines along an economic corridor to support economic activity and retain 15 jobs.

According to the state DEO, the RIF program is intended to facilitate access of rural communities to infrastructure funding programs, such as those offered by the Small Cities Community Development Block Grant, U.S. Department of Agriculture - Rural Development, and the U.S. Department of Commerce - Economic Development Administration.

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The other Florida communities selected for the grant are as follows:

  • City of Apalachicola ($300,000) — to conduct planning and design for improvements to the City’s stormwater conveyance system.
  • City of Belle Glade ($291,732) — to conduct planning and design for stormwater improvements throughout the City’s downtown area.
  • City of Gretna ($3,501,840) — to extend water, sewer, and roadway infrastructure for a new manufacturing business in an underdeveloped commercial site.
  • Hardee County ($235,000) — to conduct planning and design for significant sewer improvements within Pioneer Park.
  • City of Macclenny ($905,000) – to extend the City’s water and sewer utilities to allow business development in an underdeveloped area and serve the local elementary school.
  • Town of White Springs ($300,000) — to conduct Town-wide water system improvements, including water main and service replacements, extensions, and upgrades.

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