Smithfield Hopes Amazon Project Can Lure $3.8M Infrastructure Grant

Leveraging the jobs created by the Amazon project coming to the West Smithfield Industrial Park, the Town of Smithfield hopes they can land a $3.8 million wastewater infrastructure grant for the West Smithfield area.

On July 6, the town board voted unanimously to apply for the American Recovery Act (ARA) grant.  ARA has appropriated $3.3 billion to the federal Economic Development Administration and US Department of Commerce.   The majority of the funds have to be used towards public infrastructure projects. 

Town of Smithfield Public Utilities Director Ted Credle and Grant Administrator Skip Greene believe the Town has a good chance at obtaining the grant based on the 500 jobs being created by Amazon. 

The town would be required to pay for 20 percent of the $3.8 million cost, or $760,000. 

Mr. Credle said the existing wastewater infrastructure in West Smithfield is adequate, with a pump station being upgraded in 2016, however continued growth in the Industrial Park and future residential development could potentially put a strain on the system. The upgrades could include replacing a 12 inch sewer line with a 24 inch line and upsizing the pump station.

Councilman Travis Scott made a motion to apply for the grant funds.  Councilman Steve Rabil seconded the motion, which was approved unanimously.