Grant will fund Eutaw bridges

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 23, 2005

United States Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced Tuesday that $330,667 will be released from the Department of Transportation for bridge reconstruction in Eutaw.

The grant will go toward helping the city make bridge repairs they had their eye on for some time.

Shelby said he was pleased to be able to help the people of Eutaw in their quest for safer roads.

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“I am pleased that these funds are being released to allow for much needed construction improvements to be made to the Eutaw Bridge,” Shelby said.

Senator Shelby secured these funds in the fiscal year 2005 federal appropriations process.

Eutaw mayor Raymond Steele said the city was extremely grateful fro the grant and looked forward to getting the repairs in place.

“This is something obviously the city is grateful to get,” Steele said. “We are very happy to get this money to help us replace some bridges because we had three we really wanted to look at.”

The money will serve as a jumpstart for the projects Steele said they likely could not have completed without the money.

“This money is big because it would have been pretty difficult to replace the bridges without it,” Steele said. “I really don’t see how we could have without securing the grant.”

It will not take the city long to decide where to aim the funds. Steele said there were three bridges they had looked at with one being in immediate need of help.

“We have one bridge in particular that is in pretty bad shape,” Steele said. “There is a bridge on Kirkwood that we are mostly concerned with. There are three altogether, but the one on Kirkwood is the one that concerns us the most. ”

Steele said if there is money left over there is another bridge in line. However, if they can knock out their first priority the project will be a success.

“There is another one on Clarke Drive we would also like to get to,” Steele said.

“But if we can get that one on Kirkwood we will be in good shape.”

The grant was especially meaningful because of the competition for federal funding. Steele said the people of Eutaw were very fortunate to have representation in Washington that kept the small towns in mind too.

“We are extremely grateful to have this grant and glad to have the funds to get the projects done,” Steele said. “In our community we are just thankful to be able to get funding in a time when funding has become more difficult to get. This is a blessing too our community and we are glad to have someone like Sen. Shelby looking out for us.”