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Rhode Island Engineering Jobs Flooded with Funding

Posted on June 10, 2009

New Rhode Island engineering jobs, as well as survey and construction jobs, will soon be created with a little help from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

The State of Rhode Island recently announced that it will receive more than $2.3 million in federal stimulus money for flood protection projects in Cranston and West Warwick. The money will help create jobs, restore habitats and prevent flooding along the Pawtuxet, Pocasset and Meshanticut rivers.

The Department of Agriculture‘s Natural Resources Conservation Service in the state will receive $1.95 million to purchase easements and conduct restoration at four sites and about $400,000 to design, engineer and obtain permits for the projects.

Of the funding, $984,550 will go to Cranston to purchase two easements that will reconnect the Pawtuxet River to its floodplain by removing dikes and reestablishing aquatic plant species. The project will create 54 jobs.

Cranston will use $539,475 in funding to purchase an easement as part of the Pocasset River Watershed Study to prevent flooding by removing floodplain fill and restoring the historic stream channel. This project will create 30 jobs.

West Warwick will use $431,975 to purchase an easement that will help restore a tributary to the Meshanticut River by removing a dike, removing inadequate culverts and debris and restoring a stream channel and flood plain wetlands. The project will create 23 jobs.

“This federal funding will preserve open space and protect more homes and businesses in Cranston and West Warwick against future flooding,” Sen. Jack Reed said. “These projects will put over 100 people to work in survey, construction and engineering jobs and help restore and benefit Rhode Island’s natural landscape.”

Overall, the USDA received $145 million in federal stimulus funding and selected 289 applications throughout the country to acquire floodplain easements, covering more than 36,000 acres of land in 36 states.

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