A new roof for the Columbia County Library is among projects that will receive Community Development Block Grants.

The grants were recently announced by the Southwest Arkansas Planning and Development District.

The City of McNeil will also receive funds to rehabilitate the existing wastewater collection system.

Columbia County was awarded $300,000 to remove and replace the roof of the library in Magnolia. A new 20,125-square-foot Snap-Lok metal roof will be installed.

The roof is necessary to protect the $1.1 million building and its literary archives, public technology equipment, and genealogical records.

McNeil will get a $299,570 grant to replace 3,300 linear feet of gravity sewer main, replace eight manholes where needed, and repair the north side levee at the wastewater plant.

Other grants in the region include the following:

Lafayette County is receiving a $300,000 CDBG-CARES Act grant for a new Emergency Operations and Reception Center. The 4,800-square-foot facility will have 2,400 square feet of storage for Personal Protection and Emergency Response Equipment. The other half will be used to conduct training for emergency services personnel. It will be used as a COVID Emergency Operations Center. This area will be set up and used on an as-needed basis for pandemic response.

UA-Cossatot in De Queen will get a CDBG-CARES Act grant for $292,078 to start a Medical Laboratory Technician (MLT) program. The grant and funds from the college will allow for the construction, renovation, and equipping of the 69 credit-hour program with one complete working wet laboratory with accompanying skills classroom, plus another classroom dedicated to the lecture portions of the curriculum. A total of 8,300 square feet of existing space will be renovated.

Dallas County will get a $268,480 CDBG-CARES Act grant to renovate an existing facility for use as a 3,120-square-foot Emergency Operations Center in Fordyce. It will provide space for COVID-19 test and vaccinations, and office space for emergency operations, training, planning, and pandemic needs.

The Tow of Perryville (Hempstead County) will receive a $300,000 grant to improve water infrastructure to 65 customers. The current distribution lines are made of 2-inch galvanized pipe which are undersized for the number of customers the system serves. The inadequate size of the distribution lines causes low water pressure which can be a potential health hazard. Current water meters and valves will also be replaced.

The City of Nashville was awarded $300,000 for water system improvements. The Nashville Water System provides service to approximately 2,035 customers. The western end of the water system, that serves several residential areas and the Howard County Children’s Center, currently lacks sufficient water pressure. The lack of sufficient water pressure puts the customers on the western end of the system at risk for imminent loss should a fire occur.

The Town of Ben Lomond will get $297,170.00 to rehabilitate its 50,000-gallon standpipe water storage tank. The interior coating of the tank is beyond routine maintenance repair, and the coating on the ceiling and walls are failing.

The City of Emmet will get a $235,000 grant for the blasting and painting of the interior and exterior surfaces of Emmet’s 50,000-gallon elevated water tower. Other safety features will be installed and the overflow pipe will be extended.

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