$27.3 million granted by Texas GLO for historic disaster mitigation projects in Milam County

Funds to improve roads, drainage, water, and sewer infrastructure approved for Milam County cities of Buckholts, Cameron, Milano and Rockdale

Contact: Brittany Eck
(512) 463-5708
PDF Version
PRESS RELEASE — May 21, 2021

AUSTIN — Today Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush and County Judge Steve Young announced the Texas General Land Office (GLO) approved nearly $27.3 million in flood mitigation projects to improve roads, drainage, water and sewer infrastructure in the Milam County cities of Buckholts, Cameron, Milano and Rockdale. These infrastructure projects will directly benefit thousands of residents in a majority low-to-moderate income (LMI) areas that faced repetitive storm damage in 2015, 2016, and in 2017 with Hurricane Harvey. 

“In recent years Texas has led the nation in disaster declarations, especially repetitive flooding,” said Commissioner Bush. “There is a great need for new and better infrastructure to help prevent the devastation major storms can bring, especially in low-to moderate-income communities. The historic funding we’re announcing today for communities in Milam County will go directly to projects that will help fortify Texas homes, businesses and critical infrastructure against future disasters for generations.”

“Major storms bring heavy rains to our communities, resulting in devastating flooding, property damage, environmental health hazards, and erosion that weakens already over-burdened infrastructure,” said Milam County Judge Steve Young. “This $27 million from Commissioner George P. Bush and the GLO will fund several projects throughout the county for new sewer lines, flood control drainage, streambank stabilization measures and will help ensure a safe and dependable water supply for our residents.” 

In May 2020, Commissioner George P. Bush announced the kick-off of the application process for the first round of more than $2.3 billion in Community Development Block Grant Mitigation (CDBG-MIT) funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to protect Texas communities hit by Hurricane Harvey and severe flooding in 2015 and 2016. During the first round, the GLO conducted three competitive application programs from the CDBG-MIT Action Plan. Those programs include:

Applications closed for the first round of funding October 28, 2020, and the GLO evaluated all 290 submitted applications in accordance with the HUD approved scoring criteria. Eligible applications with the highest scores were awarded funds. The second round of the competition will award the remaining $1,144,776,720 in mitigation funding to Hurricane Harvey eligible entities.

HUD defines mitigation as activities that increase resilience to disasters and reduce or eliminate the long-term risk of loss of life, injury, damage to and loss of property, and suffering and hardship, by lessening the impact of future disasters. HUD requires that at least 50% of total funds must be used for activities benefiting low- to moderate-income (LMI) persons.

The State of Texas CDBG Mitigation Action Plan: Building Stronger for a Resilient Future outlines the use of funds, programs, eligible applicants, and eligibility criteria as required by HUD. The plan was sent to HUD on February 3, 2020, after an extraordinary public outreach effort including a 50-day public comment period and eight regional public hearings, far-surpassing HUD requirements. HUD approved the plan March 31, 2020. For more information, please visit recovery.texas.gov/mitigation.

City of Buckholts: Sewer and Stormwater Improvements Project - $4,479,940

LMI Percentage: 75.53

Although Buckholts is inland from direct hits from hurricanes, the resulting tropical storms and depressions are historically still carrying heavy rains when they reach the town, resulting in major flooding, causing housing damage, environmental health hazards, and damage to an already burdened infrastructure.

The project is designed as an integrative, comprehensive approach to address the effects of flooding throughout the entire town. The goal is to alleviate the flooding at the lift stations to reduce the volume of water in the central collection system and ultimately the wastewater treatment plant. These improvements are broken into two infrastructure activities – sewer lines and flood control drainage - both activities addressing flooding risks and reducing/mitigating the impact on housing, infrastructure, and human health conditions.

Wastewater system improvements

  1. Remove and install twenty-four (24) new sewer line cleanouts
  2. Remove and replace twenty-six (26) new manholes in the outer collections system to prevent infiltration and inflow and decrease the risk on the downstream system

Flood control and drainage Improvements

  1. Excavate and replace 20500 linear feet (LF) of gravity sewer
  2. Remove 100 existing culverts and replace them with 3200 LF of reinforced concrete pipe culverts
  3. Repair of 4000 LF of sewer line pavement

City of Cameron: Little River Pump Station Improvements Project - $14,125,469

LMI Percentage: 72.11

The city of Cameron has an existing four (4) millions of gallons per day (MGD) pump station and low water impoundment located on the Little River that is in danger of being cut-off from the river by necking occurring just upstream of the existing pump station. Continued flooding has caused erosion of the riverbank near the existing pump station and impoundment, which is causing an oxbow to form that will leave the segment of the river without water.

The project will relocate the pump station and low head impoundment to ensure access to a dependable water supply during future storm events. This project will ensure that a safe and dependable water supply is available to residents.

The project includes the following improvements:

City of Milano: Citywide Road and Drainage Improvements Project - $4,317,323

LMI Percentage: 65.17%

When major flooding occurs, damage to roadways is likely. The ability of a road surface to quickly drain water is directly related to the safety of the road. There must also be adequate drainage infrastructure at the roadside to collect and move water to designated areas where it can be properly managed and not impact city infrastructure. To that end, the city of Milano proposes street improvements and accompanying drainage features.

Milano is subject to frequent flooding due to the streams and rivers that border and flow through the area. The project includes the following:

City of Rockdale: Ham Branch Watershed Drainage Improvements Project - $4,417,469.03

LMI Percentage: 53.07 

The proposed drainage improvement activities will aid in mitigating flood hazards along the Ham Branch Watershed. Flooding has been repeatedly documented and the sites selected for this project will increase safety and mitigate this flood hazard. Assets of this project include implementation and installation of storm sewers, culverts, storm water detention facilities, and streambank stabilization measures that will each serve to reduce the flooding hazards in the Ham Branch watershed.

The project proposes the following for each site:

More Press Releases