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Village Seeks Block Grant
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Pleasant Prairie Seeks Community Development Block Grant Funds to Address Flooding Issues...
The Village of Pleasant Prairie has recently applied for a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) in hopes of receiving funds through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to address flooding issues in six areas of the Village. The program assists local governments in areas that have experienced a natural (or manmade) disaster. The current funding was initiated in response to a Presidential declaration of disaster resulting from flooding that occurred between June and July of 2008 that impacted 31 counties in southern Wisconsin. Pleasant Prairie has identified six specific project areas within the Village that meet the strict eligibility requirements for the program. The CDBG funds may be used for disaster related damage to a dwelling unit (though not for the replacement of personal belongings or other costs covered by insurance and other federal or state assistance); acquisition and demolition of dwellings unable to be repaired; and publicly owned utility system repairs. In addition to other requirements, preference must be given to households with low- to moderate-income levels, and public participation must be sought to help identify any unmet needs.
On Monday, November 30, the Village held a Public Hearing to solicit feedback regarding their intent to submit an application for funding. On the same evening, the Village Board authorized the submission of the grant application and adopted a Citizen Participation Plan related to the program. Mike Spence, Village Engineer commented, “These projects, if funded, will reduce the chance of flooding during rain events in areas of the Village that have been hardest hit in the past.” Spence added, “While it’s not realistic to expect a storm water system to immediately manage an extremely large event, like the one we experienced in June of 2009, the proposed projects would give these areas a chance to recover from past flooding events and mitigate future problems.” In the course of completing the application, Village staff has identified and documented the damage caused during the 2008 flooding that was not covered by other private or public funding sources.
The six project areas and related plans included in the grant application are: the former Manutronics property for partial building demolition and swale construction; a Wilmot Road property for auxiliary storm sewer; the Chateau Eau Plaines area for storm water mitigation design, land acquisition and pond construction; Carol Beach Unit 1 for storm water mitigation design and construction; a Graystone Subdivision property for utility system flood proofing; and a Pleasant Homes property for building flood proofing. Pleasant Prairie will be requesting over $3 million to address flooding in these six areas. There are approximately $75 million eligible dollars across the state. The Village will learn in early 2010 if funding for the projects is approved. If approved, engineering could begin in mid- to late-2010 with construction following soon after. The Village of Pleasant Prairie endorses fair housing practices.