HENDERSON, KY. (WEHT) — Big news came out of Henderson and Webster counties Tuesday afternoon. Gov. Andy Beshear announced the two counties will receive over $5M dollars in funding.
Beshear says the funding will improve vocational training in Western Kentucky, improve sewer infrastructure, expand a senior center and enhance playground safety.
“As we build a better Kentucky, we’re making sure we lift up every Kentuckian and every community,” Gov. Beshear said. “That means making sure our playgrounds are safe, ensuring our infrastructure is reliable, training our students and supporting our senior citizens. We are building a stronger, brighter future for all Kentuckians.”
Beshear outlined where all the funding amounts are going below.
Henderson County High School Career & Technical Education (CTE) Unit Improvements
Gov. Beshear awarded $3,983,600 to Henderson County Schools to improve the CTE unit at Henderson County High School. Students at the CTE unit engage in hands-on training to learn skills related to welding, childhood education, agriculture and more. The funding will go toward creating a new administrative suite, renovating the restrooms, creating a new culinary arts area, renovating the greenhouse and replacing the HVAC system, among other general improvements. The funding comes from Gov. Beshear’s Better Kentucky Plan, which was appropriated funding by the General Assembly.
“The Henderson County High School CTE unit is the largest career and technical program in the state of Kentucky under one roof,” said Dr. Bob Lawson, superintendent of Henderson County Schools. “We are grateful for this grant opportunity and thankful to everyone who helped make this possible. We look forward to strengthening our partnerships with local businesses and industries while proudly watching our community thrive and grow. Through this grant, we will continue to expand student enrollment in the CTE program and successfully prepare our students for the workforce or college while becoming a national innovative leader in education.”
Webster County Senior Center Expansion Project
Gov. Beshear awarded Webster County $319,356 in CDBG-CV funds to renovate and expand the current Webster County Senior Center in Dixon. The renovation will expand the facility’s outdoor space to add a new outdoor entertainment center with a stage and room for socially distant seating, as well as an expanded deck area. New freezer units will be installed in the kitchen to accommodate the demand for more prepared meals per day for seniors, which has increased over 400% since the beginning of COVID-19 pandemic.
“Webster County is very grateful that Gov. Beshear continues making our seniors a priority,” Webster County Judge/Executive Steve Henry said. “This addition will be a benefit for them for years to come.”
Sebree Sanitary Sewer Replacement Project
Gov. Beshear announced $1,000,000 in funding to the City of Sebree in Community Development Block Grant Coronavirus Response (CDBG-CV) funding. The funds will help Sebree replace nearly 9,000 feet of existing sewer line. This project will also install 100 feet of new sewer line to serve four households for the first time. In total, this project will benefit 515 households and businesses.
Clay City Park Improvements
Gov. Beshear also announced that the City of Clay was selected by the Department for Local Government to receive $32,367 from the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund. The project will undergo review by the National Parks Service prior to receiving funding.
The funds would benefit the Clay City Park by helping construct two multipurpose tennis/pickleball courts and install fencing around the courts. Playground gravel would be added to the playground area to enhance fall safety. The funds would also help with general landscaping around the park.
“The City of Clay is very appreciative of receiving this grant for our city park improvements,” said Clay Mayor Jackie Edens. “We are going to be able to reinstall a tennis court and pickleball courts, along with making landscape improvements. I realized during the COVID pandemic, our city didn’t have anything to offer our residents to get outside and be active.”
Henderson Community College Advanced Manufacturing Lab Expansion
Gov. Beshear celebrated $650,501 in DRA funding to Henderson Community College (HCC). The DRA announced the funding will purchase training equipment to double the capacity of HCC’s Advanced Manufacturing Center Lab to meet urgent demands of local manufacturers and increase the skilled talent pipeline. This investment is projected to train 16 individuals.
“We embrace our critical responsibility to maintain a strong talent pipeline necessary for our new and existing industries to thrive,” HCC President Dr. Jason Warren said. “I am thrilled with how we came together as a community to prioritize and address this need.”
Morganfield Water Treatment Plant Sludge Diversion Project
Gov. Beshear also celebrated $163,325 in DRA funds that are going to the City of Morganfield. The DRA announced Morganfield will use the funds to install a new pipeline, three manholes and four sluice gates. This investment is projected to benefit 1,959 families.
About the Community Development Block Grant Coronavirus Response Program
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development allocated Kentucky’s Department for Local Government $38 million to help communities prevent, prepare for and respond to the Coronavirus pandemic from the Community Development Block Grant Coronavirus Response (CDBG-CV) program. The CDBG-CV program guidelines can be found here.
About the Land and Water Conservation Fund
The LWCF provides federal grant funds to protect important natural areas, acquire land for outdoor recreation and develop or renovate public outdoor recreation facilities such as campgrounds, picnic areas, sports and playfields, swimming facilities, boating and fishing facilities, trails, natural areas and parks. To receive the federal funds, which are administered at the state level by the Department for Local Government, selected applicants must undergo federal review and receive approval from the National Park Service.
About the Delta Regional Authority
The DRA is a federal-state partnership created by Congress in 2000 to promote and encourage the economic development of the lower Mississippi River Delta region and Alabama Black Belt. DRA invests in projects supporting transportation infrastructure, basic public infrastructure, workforce training and business development. DRA’s mission is to help create jobs, build communities and improve the lives of those residing in the eight-state region’s 252 counties and parishes.