Jefferson City, MO – The Missouri Department of Natural Resources has awarded $635,000 in grants to the Joplin School District and Joplin Parks and Recreation Department for 11 playground projects necessary because of damage caused by the May 22 tornado that hit the city.
Earlier this year, Gov. Jay Nixon announced the department’s Scrap Tire Surface Material Grants were available for public schools, parks, non-profit day care centers, other not-for-profit organizations and some local governmental organizations to submit applications for the grant funding.
The scrap tire grant funding announced today by the department will help rebuild playgrounds in the Joplin area following the tornado earlier this spring. Also included, was funding for a project, highlighted by the Governor back in August, that built a playground to serve children and families living in temporary FEMA housing in Joplin.
“Children are especially vulnerable after a disaster of this scale,” Gov. Nixon said. “Schools and playgrounds help return a child’s sense of security and normalcy by providing a stable, familiar environment.”
The Joplin School District will receive $517,720 of the funds being awarded. Many of the elementary school projects listed below include multiple play areas to meet each school’s individual needs based on their number of students and to allow for age appropriate play areas for those students:
- Cecil Floyd — $77,680.
- Duenweg — $45,000.
- Eastmorland — $69,080.
- Emerson — $20,580.
- Irving — $64,940.
- Kelsey Norman — $61,880.
- McKinley — $95,140.
- Royal Heights — $83,420.
Joplin’s Parks and Recreation Department had three parks within the most heavily damaged storm area. The Parks and Recreation Department is receiving $117,080 of the grant funds for the following playground surfacing material projects:
- Cunningham — $48,000.
- Garvin — $31,200.
- Parr Hill — $37,880.
The grants announced today are in addition to $22,288 awarded in September for a playground project being built on land between the Hope Haven Mobile Home Park and the Jeff Taylor Memorial Mobile Home Park for children and families displaced by the tornado and currently living in FEMA housing.
The Department of Natural Resources is able to provide these grants through the state’s 50-cent-per-tire fee collected on new tires sold at retail in Missouri. These fees are also used to finance cleanup of illegal scrap tire dumps, inspections and enforcement activities. The department has awarded more than $2 million to 319 organizations since the surfacing material grants became available in 1994.
For more information on the Scrap Tire Surface Material Grants, please contact the Department of Natural Resources’ Solid Waste Management Program at 800-361-4827 or 573-751-5401 or visit the website at http://dnr.mo.gov/env/swmp/tires/tirefinassistance.htm.