Congress Approves Project Funding

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Projects named in an omnibus appropriations bill by Congress included money to repair the lower lake at Bonita.

Word was received by the mayor's office late Friday that the Natural Resources and Conservation Service has approved $500,000 to repair the dam at Bonita.

It was one of several local projects funded by Congress.

"The city of Meridian and Lauderdale County made out like a bandit in this appropriation bill," said Meridian Mayor John Robert Smith. "We had good meetings with our congressional representation and their staff last year and they delivered the goods this year."

Included in the appropriations bill that has now been passed by both houses of Congress:

  • $4.5 million for the first phase of constructing an interchange to the new industrial park

  • $900,000 for additional sewer projects in the city of Meridian to upgrade the system

  • $450,000 to help get a big site of property ready for the next big industrial development that should fall somewhere in the south

The mayor praised Senators Thad Cochran and Trent Lott and Cong.
Chip Pickering.

"It has been a good year because this is an appropriations cycle where you saw projects cut left and right from every other state," said the mayor.

Pickering stated in a news release that this funding will enhance the living conditions for the residents throughout the third district and provide opportunities for increased economic development, which will lead to more jobs for each community. The mayor agreed.

"It's really setting the infrastructure platform from which this city and county can expect industrial growth, can expect upgrades to our water and sewer provisions and really places this community to be a star in the south," Smith said.