Representatives from several local organizations were thrilled Friday when U. S. Representative Maxine Waters (CA-35) awarded them with letters stating that they were granted funding from the $7 million Waters had secured for 14 projects in her 35th Congressional district.
Funding for the projects was included in the fiscal year 2008 appropriations legislation passed by the United States Congress and was recently signed into law by President George Bush.
I am proud to announce that I have secured nearly $7 million dollars for projects in my Congressional district in the appropriations process for fiscal 2008, said Waters. In this time of economic hardship, I know how it is important to invest in our communities, and this funding will go a long way for the citizens of the 35th district.
A number of representatives of local agencies were present when Waters announced the awarding of the grants at the Flight Path Training Center. Each of the recipients were handed letters of acknowledgment regarding the federal legislation awarding the grants. The chosen organizations will receive the grant money at a later date.
Dr. Bettye and Hal Walker, co-founders of the African American Male Achievers Network (A-MAN) who established the Science-Technology Engineering Program (STEP) for inner city youth interested in space and science, received two grants $39,000 and $150,000.
Ive known Bette and Hal Walker for 14 years, noted Waters, who said she is a big supporter of the Walkers minority youth after school and Saturday program. This program prepares youth for future jobs in the sciences in the United States and Africa, said Waters.
AMAN board member William Nikkel expressed his gratitude to Waters during the announcement of the grants. We will be able to acquire the building we have been in for 15 years, said Nikkel.
The Walkers, who were in Africa at the time that the grants were announced, were nonetheless thrilled to learn that they had received the funding.
Dr. Jack E. Daniels III, interim president of Los Angeles Southwest College, expressed his gratitude to Waters for the grant of $400,000, which will be used for improvements for the Los Angels Southwest College Transit Center.
Daniels said that the grant will help to enhance and provide new pedestrian walkways across Western Avenue and Imperial highway to improve pedestrian safety that are heavily used by Southwest Colleges 700,000 students. The crosswalks connect existing Metro bus, Metro Rapid and Gardena bus stops to the main pedestrian entrance to Los Angeles Southwest College. This transit center will provide students with shelter and will help to transform the whole entrance to Southwest College, said Daniels.
Other organizations receiving project awards included the Westchester Streetscape Improvement Project, $1,000,000; the El Camino College Improvement Initiatives, $195,000; Frank R. Seaver Science Center at Loyola Marymount University, $1,000,000; LAU-7 Upgrades to Navy and Marine Corp Equipment from Marvin Engineering, $1,000,000; Grow Inglewood small business loan program, $500,000; Computer Aided Dispatch System for Inglewood Police Department, $423,000; Police Department Security Improvements for Gardena Police Department, $47,000; Improved Law Enforcement Technology for Gardena Police Department, $235,000; Ballona Creek Watershed feasibility study, $344,000; South Bay Work Investment Board Bridge-to-Work Program, $390,000; bus system upgrades for Municipal Transit Operators Coalition (MTOC), $1,100,000.