Special to The Canton News
Alderman Lafayette Wales, along with the Canton Board of Aldermen, recently submitted an application for a Department of Homeland Security Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) Grant.
According to a press release from the City, the City of Canton submitted this grant to seriously commence with its plaguing flooding problem, which the City has been faced with for decades. The City of Canton is located within the Black Water System, and therefore surrounded by many tributaries of the Big Black River, Bear Creek, and Batchelor Creek. The City of Canton is also situated in the middle of four waterways: Tilda Bogue-Bear Creek, Tilda Bogue, Little Bear Creek-Bear Creek System, and Upper Bear Creek.
Due to these waterways, and recent developments in the unincorporated areas of Madison County, excessive flooding can easily occur in Canton with only one to two inches of rain, causing repetitive damage to homes and property in the city and threats to safety. In identifying the problem areas within the city and the causes of the flooding, the City was excited when the opportunity came up to apply for the BRIC Grant. The City anticipates that this would be a project that the government would seriously consider funding, as government officials are serious about helping constituents get relief from decades of flooding within the city.
The City feels that it is in a distinct and notable position to receive funding under the BRIC grant, as this grant requires a financial contribution from the City; and the City recently issued a bond in the amount of two million dollars, which will serve as the City’s local share.
City officials say they look forward to working with their local delegation, state government, and federal government to do all they can to advocate for the BRIC grant to begin to provide some relief for citizens. This administration views this decades-long flooding problem as critical and places it as a priority on its administrative agenda.
The City is requesting $2.6 million dollars through its BRIC grant application to begin with the Martin Luther King South area, including Tyler Street to North Railroad Street, that has been identified as a high-priority flooding area.