OAKMAN — The Town of Oakman has been awarded a $180,000 grant to resurface a portion of Market Street.
Recipients of the Annual Grant Program, a program under the Rebuild Alabama Act, were announced by Gov. Kay Ivey on Tuesday.
Market Street is one of 21 projects that were selected, and the Town of Oakman will not have to pay matching funds for the resurfacing of Market Street to occur.
“I am beyond excited for the town and the people of Oakman to be able to get this grant,” Oakman Mayor Cory Franks told the Daily Mountain Eagle on Tuesday. “Most grants require matching funds and it’s hard for small towns to match those types of grants, so this is a big deal for us here in Oakman.”
Franks continued, “Market Street is one of our most traveled roads and it’s in bad shape, as are a lot of roads in our county. To be able to receive this grant is just the beginning of what I hope is a continuation of road improvements for us.”
The mayor thanked Sen. Greg Reed, Rep. Tim Wadsworth, and Rep. Connie Rowe for their leadership in helping Oakman secure the much-needed grant.
“This is a competitive grant program and I am happy to see Oakman on the receiving end of this grant, which is provided by the Rebuild Alabama Act I supported in the Senate,” Reed said in an emailed statement. “Improving roads and transportation infrastructure is a top priority of mine, and this grant supports that mission by making these important improvements to Market Street.”
Wadsworth said he was also pleased to learn Oakman will receive assistance through the Annual Grant Program.
“Your tax dollars are being returned to Walker County to help our rural towns. The $180,000 grant comes with no local match by the town of Oakman,” Wadsworth said. “There were only 21 grants awarded statewide. Our Walker County Commission, Sen. Reed, and all involved should be commended for working hard to bring back your tax dollars. Thank you to all involved.”
The Rebuild Alabama Act was passed in 2019 and requires the Alabama Department of Transportation to set aside $10 million from the state’s new gas tax revenue for local projects, which made the Annual Grant Program possible.
It was announced Tuesday that nearly $5 million in state funding for road and bridge projects is being awarded through the Annual Grant Program during the first half of 2021.
“More and more Alabamians are seeing road projects in their communities,” Ivey said in a press release. “As we near the second anniversary of the passage of the Rebuild Alabama Act, we are showing the people of our state that we are true to our word, and money is being spent wisely. All revenue is being used to enhance critical infrastructure to make Alabama a better place to live, work and play.”
More Annual Grant Program recipients are expected to be announced later this year.
Projects awarded through the Annual Grant Program are required to move forward within one year.
It is unclear which portion of Market Street in Oakman will be paved with the grant funds.