Comment from the Osceola City Hall
Osceola Awarded $2.8 Million EDA Grant for Infrastructure Improvement
The City of Osceola, Arkansas is very grateful to U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo in being selected to receive the Economic Development Administration $2.8 million grant. This grant is specifically through EDA’s CARES Act Recovery Assistance and is aimed to improve the wastewater infrastructure in Osceola. The City of Osceola has long needed the upgrade to the municipal sewer system in order to help support their growing steel industry partners and their residents. It is imperative that the local industries can continue expanding without causing additional strain on the local municipal system. The process of getting this large award was long and arduous for the staff at Osceola City Hall. The city’s application process began in July 2019 when Mayor Sally Wilson traveled to Washington D.C. and met with the U. S Department of Commerce staff at their third-floor boardroom to present the city’s sewer expansion’s engineering drawing and cost estimate. Over the past two years many people worked to make this grant a reality including; Mayor Wilson, City Water Manager Tim Jones, City Wastewater Manager Brandon Haynes, East Arkansas Planning and Development staff, Cody Shreve, Great River Economic Development Foundation project coordinator Tamika Jenkins, McClelland Engineering senior associate Adam Triche, Senator John Boozman and his field representative Courtney Nance, Congressman Rick Crawford and his community improvement manager Charles Landrum, and Mitchell Williams attorney Michele Allgood. And local manufacturers were instrumental in securing the award by supplying supporting documentation such as completed ED 900B forms. Altogether the city’s application was 1,000-plus pages long and the application process required hundreds of hours of meetings and task assignments. According to the EDA press release, this grant, administered under the authority of the bureau’s flexible Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) program, provides a wide-range of financial assistance to eligible communities and regions as they respond to and recover from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.