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Council approves grant search for Ingalls marina

By Martin Burkey
DAILY Staff Writer

mburkey@decaturdaily.com 340-2441

Decatur City Council on Monday OK'd Mayor Don Kyle to seek federal grants to assist with development of the former Ingalls shipyard property for a sport-fishing marina without returning to the council for approval.

Kyle said several federal grants are available that require no local matching funds.

They are the hardest to win because numerous other communities are after the "free" money, he added.

The council resolution, however, would allow the mayor to go after federal matching grants. These grants would allow the city to count the $3.5 million it has spent for land and site preparation as the local match.

City Council approved plans in 2003 to buy the 28-acre former shipyard and turn it into a tourist attraction, which could bring $1 million annually into the local economy through professional fishing tournaments.

The purchase was funded through the $1.50 nightly lodging tax.

The council elected last fall shelved plans to borrow money to develop the property and is looking at ways to make the site operational with city funds and federal grants.

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