The Orange Grove City Council is considering their options when it comes to applying for $300,000 in grant funds that could be utilized this year.
The funds would be from a grant from the Texas Department of Agriculture's CDBG Program. Betty Collier, with GrantWorks, recently made a presentation before the city council on applying for this opportunity.
“This year the regional review committee set their priority as water, sewer and drainage. This is the first time drainage has been on the top priority for 15 years,” Collier said. “It is a really good move for them, especially for so many towns, well, especially when it does rain.”
Collier said the best time to work on such issues is when it is not raining, so that the town will not have drainage issues again when the rain does come in.
She said applying is the first step, and that now is a time for citizens to come together and identify the problem areas that they think the city should address with the grant.
City Director Rick Lopez said he will be in contact with engineers to see what would be the best project to address with the funds at this time.
'Really, we need help with all three,” Lopez said of the choices between infrastructure, water and drainage.
“So any help we could receive in these areas would be a big help,” Lopez said.
Mayor Carl Srp said a priority should be work in water and sewer, since the city does not own the equipment necessary for that type of work. There is also the possibility that ditch work could be considered part of the match, city officials said.
A 10 percent match in this instance would mean $30,000 worth of work.
“If it was my choice, I'd say sewer, because they are the deepest lines. We can't do it ourselves,” Lopez said.
Juan and Sonia Garcia also made a presentation before the council concerning their plans for a new convenience store/Subway, which could be built in the Soyars Street area.
“It will be a fairly big store at some 4,200 square feet,” Garcia said. “That would be about 3,000 square feet of store space and 1,200 feet of Subway, including six tables.”
Garcia said they found in their research that the area prefers sandwiches to tacos.
The Garcias said the project could include Citgo gas, but at this time there is still a lot to be done to move the project forward, including site plans, driveway work and permits.
“I think that will be a great addition for our little city,” councilman Lynn Kirchoff said.