$2 million check presented to Harrison

Officials lined up to celebrate the $2 million MEDC grant awarded to Harrison Friday. Shown here (front row) are Brandon Fewins from Senator Stabenow’s Office, Lori Ware Clare County Community Development Director, Stacy Esbrook MEDC CAT TEAM, Senator Judy Emmons, Tracey Beadle City Manager & Clerk, Joni Ashcroft Council member, Ashton Bortz from Rep. Moolenaar’s Office, Rep. Jason Wentworth, and Mark Lipovsky City Water Dept. Supervisor. In the back row are Don Kolander Council member, Eric Keller from Senator Peters Office, Mayor Stacy Stocking, and Sam Russell, Harrison’s Department of Public Works Superintendent.

Officials lined up to celebrate the $2 million MEDC grant awarded to Harrison Friday. Shown here (front row) are Brandon Fewins from Senator Stabenow’s Office, Lori Ware Clare County Community Development Director, Stacy Esbrook MEDC CAT TEAM, Senator Judy Emmons, Tracey Beadle City Manager & Clerk, Joni Ashcroft Council member, Ashton Bortz from Rep. Moolenaar’s Office, Rep. Jason Wentworth, and Mark Lipovsky City Water Dept. Supervisor. In the back row are Don Kolander Council member, Eric Keller from Senator Peters Office, Mayor Stacy Stocking, and Sam Russell, Harrison’s Department of Public Works Superintendent.

By Pat Maurer
Correspondent

Friday was a big day for Harrison City officials.

They were presented with a $2,028,000 check from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) for much needed water and sewer improvements in the City.

“Thanks to the MEDC ICE grant, we’re going to be able to make vital improvements for the betterment of the community,” said Tracy Beadle, Harrison City Manager and clerk. “This $2 million is really going to help retrofit or replace our aging infrastructure.”

“It’s not going to solve all of our infrastructure problems, but it will take some of those things off the ‘needs list’. I don’t know what we would have done without this grant.

State, federal and local officials joined community members at City Hall to here MEDC Community Assistance Team Member Chuck Donaldson and MEDC Regional Director Stacy Esbrook explain the City’s Community Development Block Grant Infrastructure Capacity Enhancement (ICE) award. Forty-eight communities across the country applied for the highly competitive grants totaling $72.5 million.

Harrison is one of three communities receiving the maximum grant amount and one of 14 awarded in Michigan for a statewide total of $23.2 million. The Harrison grant also includes monies for grant administration.

Consultants Fleis & VandenBrink helped the City apply for the grant and will provide design and construction engineering for the improvements.

The ICE grant will pay for sanitary system lift station improvements, water system improvement and additional equipment needed to operate and maintain the infrastructure.

Sam Russell, the City’s Department of Public Works Superintendent, said the City could not afford the improvements without the grant money.

Construction is expected to begin next summer and be completed in the summer of 2019.

Harrison mayor Stacy Stocking thanked all of those involved in the project, writing and getting the grant. “Upgrades to our water and sewer infrastructure is vital to our goal of growing our community,” Stocking said. “Thank you to everyone who was a part of helping us get this grant and improve our community.”

State Senator Judy Emmons and State Rep. Jason Wentworth expressed their appreciation to Harrison officials for their diligence and perseverance in getting the grant. The City was turned down in the first round, but awarded the grant when they applied for the second time.

“Everything you have going on in your small town is pretty remarkable,” Emmons said. “You have made things happen.”

“It’s incredible to see a small community get a $2 million grant,” Wentworth said. “It doesn’t happen a lot, but it’s a tribute to what you have done.”

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