Eight counties | 36 cities | one region

a voluntary council of local governments
serving the missouri meramec area.

Delta Regional Authority announces awards for projects in Potosi and St. James

For immediate release

For more information, contact
Bonnie Prigge

ST. JAMES—Delta Regional Authority (DRA) Chairman Chris Caldwell and Missouri Gov. Mike Parson today announced that DRA will invest $1.1 million to support new manufacturing businesses, help add jobs and a product line to an existing business, and develop workforce training programs for students and displaced workers. DRA’s investments, along with other public and private partners, will bring a total of $17 million in new investments to Missouri.

Two of the five funded projects in Missouri are in the Meramec Region. Meramec Regional Planning Commission (MRPC) staff prepared the applications on behalf of the two cities: Potosi and St. James.

CITY OF POTOSI: Infrastructure Improvements. DRA Investment: $209,000. Total Investment: $13,585,840. Potosi will use DRA funding for infrastructure improvements to support new and expanding businesses in the city’s industrial park. Existing natural gas lines will be upgraded to increase capacity for businesses currently operating in the industrial park and to help attract new industry. The Washington County site is projected to create 29 new jobs and retain 85 existing jobs.

CITY OF ST. JAMES. Business Expansion. DRA Investment: $174,124. Total Investment: $1,135,883. St. James will use DRA funding to make public infrastructure improvements that include upgrades to city streets, storm sewers, sidewalks and curbs to support expansion of a manufacturing business. The business – which is adding a new product line – manufactures glass showcases and displays, cabinetry and does other millwork for national and international customers. DRA’s investment will help create 33 new jobs and retain 100 existing jobs.

MRPC is the Local Development District, serving the DRA counties of Crawford, Dent, Phelps and Washington.

Summary of DRA’s statewide investments:

DRA investments: $1,138,501
Total investments: $16,971,211
Jobs created: 142
Jobs retained: 185
Workers trained: 1,315

In addition to the projects in Potosi and St. James, three other projects were funded:

CITY OF JACKSON: New Manufacturing Facility. DRA Investment: $315,277. Total Investment: $623,402. DRA’s investment will support construction of a public roadway for access to a new sandstone mine and manufacturing facility in northwest Cape Girardeau County. The plant is projected to create 80 news jobs and manufacture Frac sand for the oil and natural gas industries.

CITY OF WEST PLAINS: Apprenticeship Program. DRA Investment: $240,100. Total Investment: $359,268. The Greater Ozarks Center for Advanced Technology (GOCAT) will use DRA’s investment to help establish a manufacturing apprenticeship program to strengthen skills and training so workers are prepared to pursue entry-level careers in industries such as electronics and electricity, machining, robotics, hydraulics and welding, among others. GOCAT is working in conjunction with manufacturing employers to develop programs that help displaced workers gain jobs and train high-school graduates for successful careers. About 115 workers are projected to be trained.

CITY OF SPRINGFIELD. Workforce Training and Development. DRA Investment: $200,000. Total Investment: $1,266,818. Economic development efforts in nine counties will be strengthened with expansion of workforce readiness efforts that focus on 16 school districts in the region. The training program will focus on preparing students to enter the workforce upon graduation. About 1,200 individuals are projected to be trained through the initiative.

“Infrastructure and workforce development are two ways that we can unlock future growth for Missouri,” said Parson, R-MO. “The investments that the Delta Regional Authority is making today and the resulting job creation is evidence of that, and I look forward to seeing how these investments propel future growth in these communities.”

Missouri’s congressional delegation issued the following statements:

“These investments will create and keep good-paying jobs, strengthen a number of our rural economies, and support local programs that prepare Missourians for in-demand careers,” said U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-MO. “I’ll continue advocating for DRA and supporting policies that will help Missouri’s rural communities compete and succeed.”

“This investment will greatly contribute to improving Southeast Missouri’s infrastructure and bolstering economic development,” said U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-MO. “Creating jobs, investing in infrastructure, and training workers with new skills for the future is critical to the success of our economy.”

“The Delta Regional Authority was created by Congress for this exact purpose – to increase the quality of life for residents in the Mississippi River Delta Region,” said U.S. Rep. Jason Smith, (MO-08). “By investing in Missouri’s infrastructure and workforce, these projects will bring new businesses and good paying jobs for the hardworking families of rural Missouri.”

DRA investments are made through its States’ Economic Development Assistance Program (SEDAP), the agency’s main federal funding program that invests in basic public infrastructure, transportation infrastructure, workforce development, and small business and entrepreneurship projects.

“DRA investments will support the development of new manufacturing facilities, support the expansion of an existing business and establish training programs that enhance the productivity and competitiveness of Missouri’s workforce,” said Caldwell. “Our key investments include infrastructure improvements that support economic development and job growth in the state.”

The Delta Regional Authority is a federal-state partnership created by Congress in 2000 to help create jobs, build communities, and improve lives through strategic investments in economic development in 252 counties and parishes across eight states. DRA has invested more than $185 million into more than 1,100 projects. Overall, DRA investments have helped create and retain more than 55,000 jobs, train nearly 45,000 workers to advance in the 21st Century, and deliver sewer and water improvements to more than 238,000 residents and businesses. Learn more at dra.gov.

Formed in 1969, MRPC is a voluntary council of governments serving Crawford, Dent, Gasconade, Maries, Osage, Phelps, Pulaski and Washington counties and their respective cities. Washington County Presiding Commissioner Marvin Wright serves as chairman of the board. A professional staff of 25 offers technical assistance and services, such as grant preparation and administration, housing assistance, transportation planning, environmental planning, ordinance codification, business loans and other services to member communities.

To keep up with the latest MRPC news and events, visit the MRPC website at www.meramecregion.org or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/meramecregion/.

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