Federal legislation funds several East Texas projects

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison announced Wednesday legislation which funds several East Texas projects, including a feasibility study for a high-speed rail.

The $285,000 will fund a study on expanding and improving intercity passenger rail service, according to the press release, and integrating it into the Dallas-Fort Worth regional rail system.

"Integrating the East Texas region into the planned Dallas-Fort Worth rail system and improving the movement of freight and passenger trains along the corridor would provide significant economic benefits to the area," Hutchison said in the press release. "This funding is an important step in making that goal a reality."

The Fiscal Year 2009 Omnibus Appropriations bill includes $450,000 to expand water infrastructure in Lufkin.

The City of Lufkin will use the funding to develop infrastructure, storage and treatment capacity to increase water supply in the region.

"As population in the region continues to grow, demand for water is also increasing," Hutchison said in the press release. "This funding will help alleviate water supply problems in the area and increase growth potential in the Lufkin area."

The bill also will provide funding for a flood control system along Lanana Creek in Nacogdoches.

"Floods and poor storm drainage along Lanana Creek can present serious hazards to the public, including preventing emergency service providers from crossing local bridges," Hutchison said. "This funding will help improve flood control in the area and create a safer environment for all residents in the area."

The City of Nacogdoches will use the funding build a system of storm water detention ponds to prevent the submersion of bridges crossing Lanana Creek during major floods, the press release stated.