There are moments when elected leaders make extraordinary efforts to support their local communities, and it is important that we recognize that good work.

Last week the city of Waterville received notice that it had won a $7.3 million grant to improve the transportation infrastructure and pedestrian experience downtown (“Waterville to receive $7.37 million federal grant to change traffic downtown, make other improvements,” Dec. 6). This is an exciting time in Waterville, and this grant will complement a wide range of other investments that are strengthening the city and creating hundreds of new jobs.

The leadership and persistence of Sen. Susan Collins made this BUILD grant possible. These grants are highly competitive — of 869 proposals, only 91 received funding. Of those funded, three were for Maine — a 100 percent success rate for the grants submitted by the state. The senator and her staff worked tirelessly to ensure that these federal grants would give Maine a boost — and that’s certainly what will happen here in Waterville.

Many other local leaders helped make this grant possible, and they all deserve our gratitude. But to the senator and her staff, we owe a special note of appreciation for supporting the downtown revitalization efforts.

David A. Greene


Colby College

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