Missouri’s Growth: DRA’s Investment in Technical Training and Infrastructure

Jonesboro, Arkansas – The Delta Regional Authority (DRA) is granting funding totaling more than $17.9 million to support 46 projects spanning across Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee under the States’ Economic Development Assistance Program (SEDAP).

This financial support stems, in part, from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law signed by President Biden, a pivotal component of his Investing in America initiative designed to stimulate local economies from the grassroots and create more resilient and vibrant communities nationwide.

The 46 new investment initiatives encompass various essential public infrastructure enhancements, improvements to transportation infrastructure, and aid in fostering business development and job training in communities throughout the DRA’s eight-state region. These projects are anticipated to either create or maintain nearly 1,100 jobs, train approximately 2,600 individuals, and impact nearly 6,000 families.

Dr. Corey Wiggins, DRA Federal Co-Chairman, emphasized the significance of the States’ Economic Development Assistance Program, stating, “It is one of DRA’s most diverse tools that enables us to expand and invest in the resiliency of the region’s public infrastructure and workforce. As a result of this investment, nearly 6,000 families will have improved access to infrastructure, ultimately enhancing their quality of life and boosting economic opportunities within their communities.”

SEDAP serves as a primary investment instrument for the DRA, offering direct funding for essential public infrastructure, transportation infrastructure, business development with an emphasis on entrepreneurship, and workforce development. The DRA collaborates directly with each state’s governors and their respective Local Development Districts to implement the program’s funding.

A selection of the projects awarded SEDAP funding includes:


  1. McGehee Hospital Drug Security and Ultrasound Replacement Equipment Project: Over $464,000 has been allocated to purchase equipment for McGehee Hospital’s nursing and emergency department in McGehee, Arkansas.
  2. Jobs 4 You Cabot: A grant of $509,000 supports the construction of a Jobs 4 You Vocational Training Center in Cabot, Arkansas.
  3. Arkansas State University – Newport (ASUN) Healthcare Workforce Training Center: More than $221,000 has been awarded for the construction of a state-of-the-art Nursing and Allied Health Professions simulation workforce training center on ASUN’s campus in Newport, Arkansas.
  4. Workforce Training Expansion – Welding Space Reconfiguration and Renovation: Over $507,000 has been allocated to renovate Black River Technical College’s welding space at its Pocahontas campus in Pocahontas, Arkansas.
  5. White River Medical Center Oncology Campaign: An award of more than $256,000 will facilitate the expansion and remodeling of the 5,600-square-foot White River Hospital’s oncology center in Batesville, Arkansas.
  6. Skills to Launch Program: More than $394,000 has been granted for the 10-week scholarship-based hands-on program designed to provide technical skills and soft skills training for Greene County’s labor force in Paragould, Arkansas.


  1. Bootheel Technical Training Center: Over $683,000 in funding will provide training for construction, linemen, and advanced manufacturing in Poplar Bluff, Missouri.
  2. Street Improvements to Assist Local Businesses: An award of more than $208,000 will be used to upgrade the local transportation network in Irondale, Missouri.
  3. City of Thayer, Water and Sewer Extensions for 63/19: A $500,000 grant will facilitate the extension of municipal water and sewer infrastructure to support the development of a travel center in Thayer, Missouri.
  4. Ellsinore Fire Station Facility: More than $274,000 in funding will be utilized to construct a new firehouse for the Ellsinore Rural Fire Protection District in Ellsinore, Missouri.
  5. JAG-Missouri, Inc.: An award of more than $256,000 will support the expansion of the JAG program for students in 16 school districts in Lockwood, Missouri.
  6. Caruthersville Project Exit Strategy: Over $297,000 will be used to construct an exit road from a grain elevator for transport trucks in Caruthersville, Missouri.

Additional information about SEDAP is available on the Delta Regional Authority’s website.

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