$400K awarded to Concordia Parish for sewer updates

Published 1:52 pm Wednesday, October 12, 2022

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VIDALIA, La. — Concordia Parish has received the final funds needed for a $2 million sewer system upgrade.

The Concordia Parish Police Jury received a $400,000 grant from the Delta Regional Authority, and the funds will supplement $1.2 million previously awarded from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program for the 2022 fiscal year.

“We got the money,” project director Sandi Burley announced to the police jury on Monday evening.

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The board applauded at the news. An $11,000 match will come from the parish’s budget for administrative fees for a combined total budget of $2 million for the project, Burley said.

In other matters, the police jury is also applying for a CDBG grant for road projects in the fiscal year 2023. The board can qualify for up to $800,000 for road projects from the CDBG program, Burley said. At last month’s board meeting it was announced that the parish would have to come up with $1 million for planned road projects, which includes asphalt for East, Eagle, Freeman, Guido, Sage, BJ and Stephens roads.

FEMA approved funds for East and BJ roads in their entirety and only portions of other roads and requires the parish to share 20 percent of the cost, Burley said. For the FEMA grant, the project also has to be completed by an April 2023 deadline.

Despite being short of funds, Police Juror Genesia Allen made the motion for the police jury to get estimates on all of the roads in their entirety to see exactly what it would cost.

Officials said the process of identifying the funds to redo the roads has been a lengthy one.  Initial work for the road projects started in 2019.

On Monday, Burley asked the board to consider dipping into its coffers for approximately $200,000 for engineering and administrative fees so that all of the $800,000 from the CDBG grant, if approved, could be used on the roads.

“800,000 isn’t going to go very far on any road project,” she said. “We need that $800,000 to strictly go to road construction.”

The board passed a motion to allocate the funds unanimously. However, if the funds for the project are not awarded, Burley said the parish would not be held responsible for paying the $200,000 cost difference.