DRA Announces $2.3 Million Investment into Louisiana Communities

October 07, 2019

CLARKSDALE, MS – Today, the Delta Regional Authority (DRA) made a $2.3 million investment that will strengthen public infrastructure and workforce development to grow the region’s economy and create jobs, DRA Federal Co-Chairman Chris Caldwell and Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards announced.

Sixteen new investments will provide funding for projects supporting water and sewer system improvements and industry-led workforce training programs in communities across Louisiana through DRA and other public and private resources.

“DRA’s mission is to support economic development by making investments into the physical infrastructure and human capital of the Delta region,” said Chairman Caldwell. “Not only will these investments improve water and sewer services for Louisiana residents, they will also provide more economic opportunities for workers and job seekers and improve quality of life.”

Funding for these projects is provided by the States’ Economic Development Assistance Program, DRA’s flagship grant program that makes strategic investments into projects supporting basic public infrastructure, transportation improvements, workforce training and education, and business development with an emphasis on entrepreneurship. DRA coordinates directly with the Office of the Governor for the State of Louisiana and seven local development districts in the state for program funding implementation.

Louisiana: 2019 Investment Snapshot

State

# of Projects

DRA Investment

Total Investment

Jobs Created/Retained

Individuals Trained

Families Affected

LA

16

$2,318,833

$5,649,336

1,237

148

8,184

“This investment that will help boost an already growing economy, which will not only serve our people but also provide much needed support to infrastructure improvements,” said Governor John Bel Edwards (D-LA). “That coupled with workforce development means that our citizens will be ready to meet the demands for skilled labor, two important building blocks of strong communities. We greatly appreciate the DRA’s dedication to a strong Louisiana.”

Louisiana’s congressional delegation issued the following statements:

“Sound infrastructure and workforce development are critical for Louisiana’s rural communities to hire and train workers. These DRA grants show investments in these areas and lay the foundation for further economic development,” said U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA).

“These are important investments that will improve the quality of life for people across Louisiana,” said U.S. Senator John Kennedy (R-LA). “From improving water and sewer systems to preparing students for technical jobs, the work by the Delta Regional Authority will help our state grow in a positive direction.”

“These investments in critical water infrastructure projects and our future workforce in Southeast Louisiana are welcome news for Louisiana families and communities,” said Congressman Steve Scalise (R - 1st District).

“It is imperative for our communities in Louisiana to have modern infrastructure, quality jobs to support our families and an economy to support business development and growth,” said Congressman Cedric Richmond (D – 2nd District). “Investments from the Delta Regional Authority put much-needed federal dollars into critical areas in our state to better the lives of all Louisianans.”

“These investments from the Delta Regional Authority are critical for rural communities across our state,” said Congressman Clay Higgins (R – 3rd District). “This includes the City of Franklin, which will receive much-needed funding to upgrade the existing wastewater treatment system. Local infrastructure improvements like this are a win for economic development and a win for Louisiana residents.”

“These strategic investments of federal dollars in the infrastructure and workforce training programs of our region are desperately needed and will be used widely to enhance the live of countless Louisianans,” said Congressman Mike Johnson (R – 4th District). “Our rural communities and businesses are grateful to receive this assistance and are anxious to put the appropriations to work for the benefit of all.”

"When businesses consider expanding into a community, they look for quality infrastructure and good people to fill jobs. These investments will improve the conditions necessary to grow Louisiana’s economy and expand opportunities for families across the state,” said Congressman Ralph Abraham (R – 5th District). I look forward to finding new ways to put federal dollars to work in our communities and improve live in Louisiana.”

“Keeping Louisiana’s economy competitive means meeting the demands of today while anticipating and preparing for tomorrow, and investments like these have a role in strengthening our capacity to train, equip, and develop our workforce to do both,” said Congressman Garret Graves (R – 6th District).

LOUISIANA INVESTMENT PROJECTS

  1. Tallulah Sewer System Improvements | Tallulah, LA: The City of Tallulah will use DRA funds to replace the headworks at the sewer treatment plant, install two new aerators in the septic pond, and install a new dechlorinator to strengthen the existing infrastructure and provide residents with improved sewer services. This investment is projected to impact 3,065 families who will benefit from improved water and sewer services. DRA Investment: $313,743
  1. Richardson Medical Center HVAC System Replacement | Rayville, LA: Richardson Medical Center will use DRA funds to replace condensation pumps, electrical and control wiring, fan coils, air ducts, and piping insulation to improve their heating and cooling system and continue to provide residents with critical medical services. This investment is projected to create five new jobs and retain 175. DRA Investment: $266,822
  1. Chalmette Wastewater Treatment Plant Replacement | Chalmette, LA: The St. Bernard Port will use DRA funds to replace their existing wastewater treatment plant with a new modern plant that provides more effective sanitary services to the port’s tenants and reduces overall operational costs. This investment is projected to retain 400 jobs. DRA Investment: $200,000; Total Project Investment: $450,000
  1. Delta Water System Improvements | Delta, LA: The Village of Delta will use DRA funds to construct a waterline parallel to Interstate 20 and extending to the interchange at Exit 186 to support existing industry and new business development. This investment is projected to create 30 new jobs and retain 15; the project will also impact 13 families who will benefit from improved water and sewer services. DRA Investment: $200,000
  1. Franklin Wastewater System Improvements | Franklin, LA: The City of Franklin will use DRA funds to renovate their existing wastewater treatment plant by installing new spiral screens, debris bagging system, and electrical power service for modern equipment. This investment is projected to impact 3,400 families who will benefit from improved water and sewer services. DRA Investment: $150,000; Total Project Investment: $171,200
  1. Grosse Tete Water System Enhancements | Grosse Tete, LA: The Village of Grosse Tete will use DRA funds to replace the existing 2-inch water lines with 6-inch water lines and install fire hydrants on all streets lacking crucial safety infrastructure. This investment is projected to impact 60 families who will benefit from improved water and sewer services. DRA Investment: $150,000; Total Project Investment: $242,166
  1. Springhill Wastewater Treatment Plant Replacement | Springhill, LA: The North Webster Parish Industrial District will use DRA funds to install a new wastewater treatment plant with an expanded capacity of 12,000 gallons per day. This investment is projected to retain 552 jobs. DRA Investment: $150,000; Total Project Investment: $316,000
  1. Nunez Community College Aerospace Labs and Makerspace | Chalmette, LA: Nunez Community College will use DRA funds to renovate a building to house its Aerospace Manufacturing Technology labs and STEAM makerspace to prepare students for high paying technical jobs. This investment is projected to create 20 new jobs and retain 10; this project will also train 100 individuals for in-demand careers. DRA Investment: $150,000; Total Project Investment: $1,180,000
  1. Concordia Parish Sewer System Consolidation | Vidalia, LA: The Concordia Parish Police Jury will use DRA funds to construct new hook-ups, collection lines, and treatment plant for Washington Heights to consolidate with the Concordia Parish Sewer District No. 1. This investment is projected to impact 1,106 families who will benefit from improved water and sewer services. DRA Investment: $150,000; Total Project Investment: $523,412
  1. Allen Parish GIS System | Oberlin, LA: The Allen Parish Police Jury will use DRA funds to develop a comprehensive GIS system that will allow the parish, related agencies, and companies to acquire accurate and up-to-date information on all properties, landmarks, and transportation networks for the regional area. This investment is projected to create four new jobs and retain four. DRA Investment: $100,000
  1. Baton Rouge IT Apprenticeship Program | Baton Rouge, LA: The Research Park Corporation will use DRA funds to expand Apprenti Louisiana – an IT Registered Apprenticeship program designed to source, screen, and train people to fill high-paying technology jobs across the state. This investment is projected to train 48 individuals for in-demand careers. DRA Investment: $100,000; Total Project Investment: $806,125
  1. Oak Grove Industrial Building Repairs | Oak Grove, LA: The Town of Oak Grove will use DRA funds to repair the roof of an industrial building occupied by a company seeking to expand and create jobs. This investment is projected to create 10 new jobs and retain 12. DRA Investment: $100,000; Total Project Investment: $150,000
  1. Dixie Inn Sewer System Improvements | Minden, LA: The Village of Dixie Inn will use DRA funds to repair and upgrade the deteriorating piping throughout their sewer treatment facility. This investment is projected to impact 170 families who will benefit from improved water and sewer services. DRA Investment: $99,750; Total Project Investment: $119,750
  1. Chatham Water Booster Station Renovation | Chatham, LA: The Village of Chatham will use DRA funds to renovate their primary water booster station and demolish their existing booster pump assemblies and controls. This investment is projected to impact 255 families who will benefit from improved water and sewer services. DRA Investment: $80,000; Total Project Investment: $101,600
  1. Bienville Water Well Improvements | Bienville, LA: Lucky Water System, Inc. will use DRA funds to install a new automated well control system to replace their existing infrastructure that was damaged by a natural disaster. This investment is projected to impact 105 families who will benefit from improved water and sewer services. DRA Investment: $71,768
  1. Baton Rouge GIS System | Baton Rouge, LA: The Baton Rouge Area Chamber will use DRA funds to create an interactive GIS system to promote state-certified sites industrial sites to companies seeking to relocate or expand their companies in the Baton Rouge metropolitan area. DRA Investment: $36,750

About the Delta Regional Authority

Established in 2000 by Congress, the Delta Regional Authority makes strategic investments of federal appropriations into the physical and human infrastructure of Delta communities. Led by the Delta Regional Authority Board-comprised of the Federal Co-Chairman, appointed by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate, and the governors of the eight states-the Delta Regional Authority fosters local and regional partnerships that address economic and social challenges to ultimately strengthen the Delta economy and the quality of life for Delta residents. The Delta Regional Authority works to improve regional economic opportunity by helping to create jobs, build communities, and improve the lives of the 10 million people who reside in the 252 counties and parishes of the eight-state Delta region.

DRA Media Contact:
Susan Edwards         
501-682-7392
sedwards@dra.gov

DRA Program Contact:
Kemp Morgan
662-483-8210
kmorgan@dra.gov