By Lauren Estes
The Cullman Times
GOOD HOPE —
The City of Good Hope is seeking a $200,000 grant for the rehabilitation of Alabama Highway 69 to prepare for multiple businesses coming in 2014 and bringing the city 100 jobs.
Good Hope Mayor Corey Harbison said they have not sent in the application for the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA) grant, but it will be completed soon. Community Consultant’s grant writer Kevin Kessler said if this grant is awarded, it will be the third grant received by Good Hope this year.
“The first grant was applied for in 2012 and it was for a sewer line extension to Bettner Drive and the Lindsay Road area,” Kessler said. “Over the years, that area has had really bad septic tank problems. They applied for it for two years and were unsuccessful, and in 2012, it was funded under a CDBG (Community Development Block Grant). Another was also received this year for (logistics company) James R. Smith [Trucking] move in order to create jobs. This grant too will create jobs.”
Kessler said the city could apply under the basis of adding new jobs. If this grant is awarded, they plan to add a new traffic signal on Hwy. 69, as well as, other Hwy. 69 road improvements. Harbison said this will coincide with the WilcoHess project that includes the travel center, truck stop and Wendy’s restaurant coming to Good Hope in the summer of 2014.
“If a business contacts you and certain infrastructures are needed to support these businesses and you see the job availability, these grants support that,” Harbison said. “Knowing we need certain infrastructures to bring in the businesses to get the jobs, the grants can help make that happen. ADECA is great because they are quick to release a response referring to the projects because they know they need to be ready to go and it only takes a few weeks and you get a response.”
Harbison said the final word on grants and the amount that is awarded is decided by ADECA.
“The thing about ADECA is-they don’t have to award the full $200,000, they could just give us $100,000 of it,” Harbison said, “It’s at their discretion. The recent sewer project was brought in after receiving a $300,000 grant. We also just got another $150,000 for a sewer line extension to County Road 222 which was for job creation. This grant will also help us produce jobs.”
ADECA administers financial assistance in the form of grants to support multiple types of projects and improvements to cities and counties in Alabama, as well as, non-profit groups and other qualified organizations.
Lauren Estes can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 256-734-2131, ext. 137.