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Texas congresswoman defends vote against Pres. Biden's infrastructure bill, which included funds for Fort Worth's Panther Island project

Rep. Kay Granger is the elected official for the 12th District of Texas. The dangers of flooding in Cowtown surfaced when she served in local politics for the city.

FORT WORTH, Texas — The dream team for the Panther Island project formally announced plans to get the ball rolling as they oversee new flood control monies for the City of Fort Worth.

It's a plan that's been in the making for 20 years. 

Colonel Jon Stover from the U.S. Army of Corp Engineers steered away of from a promise on completion. But he did reveal the search for contractors alone would take a year. Stover also indicated that the bidding process for the contract work would follow the city's guidelines. 

Still, Stover wants people to know there are indicators already out there about the Panther Island project. 

"So, the first thing that you'll see is dirt turning on what's called the valley storage area and that that allows for continued sewage water in the case of flood," said Stover. 

RELATED: Fort Worth's Panther Island project gets $403 million from Army Corps of Engineers 

Rep. Kay Granger is the elected official for the 12th District of Texas. The dangers of flooding in Cowtown surfaced when she served in local politics for the City of Fort Worth. 

U.S. Army Corp Engineers has warned for years that Fort Worth is at risk of deadly floods.  

Like so many others, Granger said she feared a repeat of 1949 when Fort Worth floods killed 10 people and left thousands homeless. 

Now, two decades later, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has allocated $403 million in federal funds for the state of Texas. The money comes from President Biden's signature infrastructure legislation. 

Granger voted against that legislation, but she said, it's because the bill was muddied by other projects.

"I wasn't against this project," Granger said. "Obviously, it's some of the other parts of that deal."

During Thursday's news conference, Granger gave credit to Representative Marc Veasey who attended virtually to help announce the funding. The deal involves redirecting part of the Trinity River and building a bypass channel. Engineers will work closely with city leaders and water company officials.

Leah King serves as president of the Tarrant Regional Water District.  

"We get a full accounting of all of the money that's spent, and the timeline is updated," said King.

Fort Worth Mayor Mattie Parker wants to make sure other funds allocated toward the city's growth are also beneficial. She and her team have already heard from investors who want to help the City of Fort Worth thrive and grow. 

Parker is determined not to let economic growth overshadow keeping the rich history of the city. 

"There are actually 20, 30, 40 acres right now that are developable and outside of this bypass channel," Parker said. "We are the fastest growing city in the country." 

The Panther Island project has a separate component that will boost retail, housing and recreational life along the Trinity River. Parker believes since the time frame of the project itself stretches across two decades, the city will likely have campaigns to remind and teach residents across all cultures about the opportunities it brings to Fort Worth.