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State augments Huntsville downtown flood mitigation

HUNTSVILLE – Gov. Kay Ivey had words of praise for Huntsville native and State Rep. Rex Reynolds when she addressed a gathering at the Von Braun Center this month.

Among the topics Ivey touched on was a $5 million boost to the city from the state that will be added to the ongoing Pinhook Creek flood mitigation and revitalization project in the downtown area. This part of the project runs from just north of Holmes Avenue to south of Memorial Parkway and Governors Drive. 

Ivey complimented Reynolds at the Huntsville-Madison County Chamber’s Alabama Update regarding his leadership as chair for the Ways and Means General Fund Committee, and slipped in the local boon for fighting flood.

“Rex is a great part of my team as we work through the budget process,” Ivey said. “Very importantly, he does not forget about the people he represents back home. I was proud Rex helped us invest to improve drainage in downtown Huntsville. And this Alabama weather drainage is nothing to mess around with.

“Rex helps our state continue taking a fiscally conservative approach to budgeting while investing in critical projects like this that will pay dividends for years to come.”

The $5 million investment will help safeguard Huntsville’s central business district and facilities such as the VBC, Huntsville Hospital and businesses from flood damage. It will also enhance public safety by providing safe pedestrian and bicycle access across Governors Drive and South Memorial Parkway.

Following Ivey’s address, Reynolds told 256 Today that all Alabama residents should note that much of the budget he and the committee he’s chaired have worked on have included federal supplements totaling millions of dollars.

“There are times to brag on the budget but words of caution,” Reynolds said. “All the federal dollars (from pandemic relief) will be gone by December of 2026.”

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, President Joe Biden signed the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), the latest federal stimulus bill to aid public health and economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, on March 11, 2021.

The plan included $350 billion in emergency funding for state, local, territorial and tribal governments, known as the Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds. Those funds were designated to be spent by the end of 2026.

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