U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke traveled to Iowa City today to award four Iowa communities with a share of $30 million in grants for flood recovery. Most of the grant money – $25 million – will go to Iowa City to help relocate a wastewater treatment facility damaged by the flood of 2008.
Money will also go towards reconstructing a street and bridge near the Iowa River. Secretary Locke says he’s encouraged by the rebuilding taking place throughout the state. “The folks of Iowa never lost hope,” Locke said. “You never gave up.” Economic Development grants will also go to Dubuque to construct a multi-level parking facility and to Shenandoah and Columbus Junction to rebuild from flood damage.
“By making these sound investments, we not only put people to work – we save communities future costs,” Locke said. “And we know those folks who work on the roads, repair bridges and lay concrete – they shop in malls, eat in restaurants and support so many other businesses in their community.”
Iowa City Mayor Matt Hayek says he’s pleased with the progress being made in Iowa City, but believes the flood recovery efforts are far from over. “All we can do is press forward as fast as we can. I believe we are doing so,” Hayek said. “The results we’re announcing today are certainly a part of that, but we cannot take our eye off the ball and neither the council or city staff is going to do that.”