Gazebo Gazette

Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves announced Tuesday, September 20, 2022 that the U.S. Department of the Treasury has issued grant awards for two Mississippi RESTORE projects and hope strengthen infrastructure benefitting the economy in the Gulf Coast Region.

The projects were initially approved by the governor based on recommendations from the Governor’s Gulf Coast Advisory Committee in continued response to recovery from the BP Oil Spill.

“These grants will allow us to make significant improvements at the Gulfport-Biloxi Airport and the Broadwater Marina,” said Governor Reeves. “As I’ve said from the beginning, I am committed to seeing that all funds meant for restoring our Coast, go strictly to our Coast.”

Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) will have a hand in put these projects together for the Gulf Coast.

“I have been involved in our Restoration work since 2017 and really appreciate every step we make in restoring our Coast, improving our environment, and stimulating economic growth and development through these projects,” said Chris Wells, Executive Director of the MDEQ. “It is a pleasure to be a part of this overall effort.”

The projects issued grant awards are:

Gulfport-Biloxi Airport Site Mitigation and Improvements ($6,276,121)

  • The purpose of this project is to create a construction-ready site to facilitate aeronautical development opportunities at the Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport operated by the Gulfport-Biloxi Regional Airport Authority.  RESTORE funds will be used to fund the preparation of a “Project Ready” site for future commercial development as well as the demolition of the current antiquated vehicle fleet maintenance facility and the construction of a new, relocated vehicle fleet maintenance facility.

Broadwater Marina Restoration Project ($5,000,000)

  • The purpose of this project is to return the state-owned property to a safe, working condition for immediate public use and prepare the site for future tourism and economic development. The Marina is located within Public Trust Tidelands which the Mississippi Secretary of State’s Office manages and leases.  RESTORE funds of $5,000,000 will help repair existing marina infrastructure and encourage future redevelopment of the marina and economic development on the north side of Highway 90.

These projects are part of Mississippi’s Multiyear Implementation Plan (MIP) which, on the most recent amendment, includes six new projects (including the two above) and four modifications to existing projects totaling $37,570,000 ($32.23M for the new projects and $5.34M for the modifications).

The RESTORE Act requires the state, through the MDEQ, to prepare the MIP for Direct Component Funding, which is administered by the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

MDEQ is the recipient of these grants from the Treasury and will issue sub-awards to the Gulfport-Biloxi Regional Airport Authority and to the Mississippi Secretary of State’s Office for implementation of the projects.

Some of the eligible activities that can be included in the state’s MIP are: restoration and protection of natural resources; mitigation of damage to natural resources; workforce development and job creation; improvements to state parks; infrastructure projects, including ports; coastal flood protection; and promotion of tourism and Gulf seafood.