CAIRO — Cairo City council members voted Monday night to move ahead with applying for a new community development block grant (CDBG) in 2020.

Last year's proposal to replace aging water lines on the southwest side of town was shot down by the state Department of Community Affairs, but City Manager Chris Addleton believes that this year's application will stand a better chance.

"We were very close (last year), and we feel confident that we have a good application that'll be hopefully approved this year," he said.

This year's application will largely be the same as last year's, Addleton said. The state ranks CDBG applications based on various criteria, and though 2019's proposal did not receive enough points to be approved, the city manager believes things will be different in 2020.

CDBG applications are competitive, with numerous municipalities from across the state submitting proposals with the hopes of obtaining some of a limited pool of funds for public sector projects, typically for infrastructure needs. As a result, CDBGs are typically awarded to areas of "great needs," Addleton said.

With Monday's vote, Addleton said the city will now need to work on drafting the precise details of this year's application.

An application will be formally submitted to the state later this year.

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