Missouri injects federal funds into local flood control and water supply projects

Missouri injects federal funds into local flood control and water supply projects
Missouri injects federal funds into local flood control and water supply projects

JEFFERSON CITY — More than $55 million in federal pandemic relief funds are heading to the St. Louis area to deal with flooding, clean water and lead pipes.

In an announcement Friday, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources said it is providing a total of $410 million to help Missouri communities improve their water infrastructure.

It comes after a summer of flooding in the area that submerged homes and businesses and triggered a federal disaster designation.

The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District is receiving $26.2 million for stormwater drainage projects that will cost a total of $33.5 million. The district will receive an additional $5 million to help pay for wastewater upgrades.

Money is not tied to flooding caused by record rainfall in late July. Rather, they are projects that have been planned for several years, including soil and erosion work on Maline Creek in northern St. Louis County, which experienced significant flooding in 2015.

“These are projects that have been in the works for some time,” said sewer district spokesman Sean Hadley.

Maline Creek virtually divides the Hathaway Manor South Subdivision, off Old Halls Ferry and Pershall Roads into an unincorporated portion of the county.

The backyards of about 50 to 75 houses are adjacent to the creek. Many of those homeowners erected fences, but now those fences and tall trees have slipped into the creek.

Other communities in the area receiving the money include Frontenac, St. Peters, St. Charles and Crystal City in Jefferson County. The City of St. Louis Water Department is also receiving $200,000 to replace lead pipes.

Nearly $3 million going to St. Peters will help pay for more than $7 million in projects that will address flooding on streets and properties, spokeswoman Lisa Bedian said.

In a statement, Governor Mike Parson said upgrading water infrastructure would boost economic development in the state.

“We knew this program was needed for communities across our state, and that’s why we included it in this year’s budget,” said Parson, who is on a trade mission overseas.

Dru Buntin, director of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, said the agency had received about 1,000 applications asking for more than $2.4 billion for water infrastructure projects.

“We have designed the specific scoring criteria to ensure that the limited funds available are allocated to projects in a way that maximizes the impact of those funds throughout Missouri – in urban and rural communities, large and small,” said said Buntin.

Funding for the department’s four competitive water infrastructure grant programs was made available through the US Federal Bailout Act.

Applications were scored based on the applicant’s financial need, engineering ability, and project necessity.

The ministry announced the availability of $410 million for community water infrastructure grants in May. The application period closed on July 14.

According to a tally by Auditor Nicole Galloway, Missouri received a total of $11.7 billion in federal aid related to the COVID-19 pandemic. An estimated $8.9 billion was spent.

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. Missouri injects from federal funds into from local projects fight floods water supply

. Missouri injects federal funds local flood control water supply projects

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