Federal grants to fund projects in Dixon, Mt. Morris

Dixon library director Antony Deter points out a section of the library that is poised to be renovated with a $210,000 federal grant. The grant will cover about a third of the planned fixes with another third coming from a state grant.

DIXON – The Senate approved an appropriations bill that includes funding for projects in Dixon, Mount Morris and Mount Carroll.

U.S. Sens. Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth announced securing more than $182 million through Congressionally directed spending for Illinois projects in the Fiscal Year 2023 Omnibus Appropriations Act.

In Dixon, that will mean $210,000 to go toward renovations at the Dixon Public Library in a $600,000 project to fix up basement space and convert it into a larger area for programs, meetings, and other events.

The 1,700-square-foot project area includes a large room, a small nearby room and a bathroom with termite damage and asbestos.

Work will include asbestos abatement, removing lead paint in the bathroom and repairing termite damage. The deteriorated wooden floor will be replaced with poured concrete, and new duct work will be installed.

LED lighting will be installed throughout, and a drop ceiling will be installed in most of the area. The bathroom will be made compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, and there will be a baby-changing table. Water-damaged plaster will be repaired and new carpeting installed. A dividing wall will be removed to provide better access between two spaces.

“This appropriations package makes significant investments in the future of Illinois,” Durbin said in a news release. “The use of Congressionally-directed spending provides members of Congress, who know their states and districts better than federal agency personnel in Washington, with the ability to direct federal funding to priority projects in their communities. This much-needed federal funding will help localities in Illinois launch important infrastructure projects, improve access to health care, advance environmental conservation, strengthen community violence prevention initiatives, support our rural communities to ensure they have access to the resources they need, and much more.”

The Mt. Morris Fire Protection District will be getting $1 million to provide funding for the design, engineering and site work for the construction of a new fire station in Mt. Morris. The existing fire station has not been updated since the 1920s.

“Our state and our nation are stronger when we invest in our communities and families—and that’s what this bipartisan funding agreement does,” Duckworth said. “I’m so proud I was able to help secure critical support for projects all across our state to help clean up our water, improve our state’s infrastructure, expand healthcare access, create jobs and tackle environmental injustice issues facing communities across Illinois.”

STEAM Hub Creation, Mount Carrol: $438,000 to

The University of Illinois Board of Trustees, in partnership with the West Carroll School District, will receive $438,000 to develop a STEAM Hub. The STEAM Hub project would include computers, digital and 3-D printers, sewing machines and art supplies for classroom instruction and after-school learning.

Rachel Rodgers

Rachel Rodgers

Rachel Rodgers joined Sauk Valley Media in 2016 covering local government in Dixon and Lee County.