Governor Ivey awards COVID-19 funds to north Alabama counties

Cullman, DeKalb, Madison, Marshall and Walker Counties each receive grants

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Gov. Ivey visits Cullman in October 2020. (Cullman Tribune file photo)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – On Friday, June 4, 2021, Governor Kay Ivey awarded almost $2.9 million in CARES Act CDBG-CV funds to five north Alabama counties that will be used to prevent, prepare for and respond to the spread of infectious diseases, such as COVID-19. The total includes $803,861 for Cullman County, which will be used for the rehabilitation and construction of a multi-use emergency response facility in the old Rescue Squad building at Sportsman Lake Park in Cullman.

According to the Governor’s press release:

The awards to Cullman, Dekalb, Madison, Marshall and Walker counties are part of more than $40 million allocated to Alabama under a special Community Development Block Grant program funded from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Governor Ivey will announce additional grants to other Alabama cities and counties as applications are processed. The grant funds are required to be expended on projects relating to the recovery from or preventing the spread of the COVID-19 virus or any future infectious diseases.

“Alabamians are eager to put the COVID-19 pandemic behind them and get on with their lives,” Governor Ivey said. “I am pleased to award these funds which will accelerate that recovery process and help us return to normal.”

Cullman County was awarded $803,861 to rehabilitate or construct a multi-use emergency response building that will be centrally located in the county.

DeKalb County was awarded $500,000 and will use funds to construct two climate-controlled buildings which can be used when necessary for health services.

Madison County was awarded $700,000 to purchase a mobile health unit and expand front-line services including food distribution and vaccine accessibility.

Marshall County was awarded $600,000 to expand health-care services, including transportation and increase food distribution to low and moderate-income families and individuals.

Walker County was awarded $288,200 to purchase medical equipment.

The funds were made available to the state by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and can be used to support COVID-19 testing and vaccinations; rental, mortgage and utility assistance; assistance to food banks and pantries; job creation and business assistance and related projects to provide pandemic relief.

Alabama counties and entitlement communities receiving the CDBG-COVID funds were required to make an application with the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs.

“ADECA is pleased to be a part of the process that is helping Alabama recover from the COVID-19 ordeal,” ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell said. “Our Alabama cities and counties displayed tremendous teamwork in deciding what eligible projects best benefitted their communities.”

ADECA administers an array of programs supporting law enforcement and traffic safety, economic development, energy conservation, water resource management and recreation development.

 The grant is funded by the Alabama Department of Economic & Community Affairs (ADECA). 

In a statement issued by the Cullman County Economic Development, Cullman County Commission Chairman Jeff Clemons said, “I would like to thank Gov. Ivey and ADECA Director Boswell for awarding Cullman County this grant. This grant will be used to turn a building that has fallen into disrepair into a top-notch facility that can be used for testing and much more in the future, if we have another pandemic, and also as a food bank for our seniors and others in need.”

Cullman County Economic Development Director Bradley Williams added, “I would like to thank my staff for the hard work they did on this project. It’s remarkable to get a grant that doesn’t require any type match and it’s important to get a facility that can benefit Cullman County citizens in so many ways.”