Delta Regional Authority Announces $1.9 Million Investment into Five Alabama Communities

September 29, 2022

DRA’s investment will improve basic public infrastructure, transportation infrastructure, and job training to support economic development in communities across the Alabama Black Belt.

CLARKSDALE, MS – Delta Regional Authority (DRA) today announced a $1,917,634 investment that will boost economic development and improve the quality of life for Alabama communities and residents. The investment will be matched by $48,629 in additional funds.

The five new investment projects will improve water and sewer systems, update transportation infrastructure, and support workforce development in communities across the Alabama Black Belt. These projects are expected to create or retain 64 jobs, train 64 individuals, and affect over 3,600 families. 

“The road to economic revitalization begins with strengthening a community’s infrastructure and developing a workforce to meet local industry needs,” said DRA Federal Co-Chairman Dr. Corey Wiggins. “Delta Regional Authority’s $1.9 million investment will help boost five Alabama Black Belt communities to enable economic growth and preparing the region for a prosperous future.”

Funding for these projects is provided by the States’ Economic Development Assistance Program (SEDAP), which provides direct investment into community-based and regional projects to support basic public infrastructure, transportation infrastructure, workforce training and education, and small businesses development with an emphasis on entrepreneurship. DRA coordinates directly with the Office of the Governor for the State of Alabama and six local development districts in the state for program funding implementation.

Alabama: FY 2022 SEDAP Investment Snapshot

  • Number of Projects: 5
  • DRA Investment: $1,917,634
  • Total Project Investment: $1,966,263
  • Jobs Created: 10
  • Jobs Retained: 54
  • Individuals Trained: 64
  • Families Affected: 3,617

“The Delta Regional Authority continues to be one of our state’s most valued partners and truly plays a vital role in our efforts to transform Alabama’s Black Belt,” said Governor Kay Ivey. “This $1.9 million investment will go a long way in improving infrastructure and supporting workforce development in communities that need it the most. I’m incredibly grateful for the DRA’s continued investment in the future of Alabama and look forward to what we can accomplish together next.”

“I appreciate Delta Regional Authority’s commitment to supporting Alabama’s Black Belt through meaningful investments,” said U.S. Senator Richard Shelby.  “Funding for infrastructure improvements and workforce development has the ability to significantly impact the quality of life in these rural communities, and I look forward to watching this $1.9 million make a difference.”

“As a proud daughter of Alabama’s Black Belt, I know firsthand what our communities can achieve with proper resources and investments,” said Rep. Terri Sewell (AL-07). “From improving our water and sewer systems to upgrading our transportation networks and attracting private investment, the funding announced today by the Delta Regional Authority will improve the quality of life for thousands of hard-working Alabamians across the rural Black Belt.”

The following projects were funded by SEDAP:

  1. Love Road Improvements | Grove Hill, AL: The Town of Grove Hill will use DRA funds to improve Love Road, an important connector for US 43 and US 84. This investment is projected to affect 54 families.
    • DRA Investment: $362,475
    • Total Investment: $362,475
  2. East Cleveland Street Drainage | Jackson, AL: The City of Jackson will use DRA funds to install a storm pipe and complete the second phase of a drainage project in the area of Cleveland and Walnut Street.
    • DRA Investment: $373,205
    • Total Investment: $421,834
  3. York Water Well Rehabilitation | York, AL: The City of York will use DRA funds to rehabilitate the Griner-Munoz Well #1 to increase production. This investment is projected to affect 3,435 families.
    • DRA Investment: $428,000
    • Total Investment: $428,000
  4. Wallace Community College – Dothan Regional Training Equipment | Dothan, AL: Wallace Community College – Dothan will use DRA funds to purchase specialized equipment that will provide maintenance training for existing Wayne Farms employees and short-term training courses for individuals within Bullock County. This investment is projected to create 10 jobs, retain 54 jobs, and train 64 individuals.
    • DRA Investment: $158,496
    • Total Investment: $158,496
  5. Shorter Lagoon Improvements | Shorter, AL: The Town of Shorter will use DRA funds to identify and repair issues with the current sewage lagoons. This investment is projected to affect 182 families.
    • DRA Investment: $595,458
    • Total Investment: $595,458


About the Delta Regional Authority

The Delta Regional Authority (DRA) is a federal-state partnership created by Congress in 2000 to promote and encourage the economic development of the lower Mississippi River Delta region and Alabama Black Belt.  DRA invests in projects supporting transportation infrastructure, basic public infrastructure, workforce training, and business development.  DRA’s mission is to help create jobs, build communities, and improve the lives of those who reside in the 252 counties and parishes of the eight-state region.

DRA Media Contact:
Shawna Blair