TYLER, TX -- A controversial pipeline has set up a charitable fund for several Northeast Texas counties, including Lamar County.
TransCanada has partnered with East Texas Communities Foundation, out of Tyler, to begin a $125,000 grant program for non-profit organizations in the 18-Texas counties where the TransCanada pipeline operations and project exist. They are hoping to give out $50,000 in grants by the end of the year.
“At TransCanada, being a good neighbor and contributing to communities is an integral part of our success," said Vice President of Keystone Pipeline Projects Corey Goulet. "The establishment of the fund is another example of our commitment to long-term community investment and our dedication to the people of East Texas."
Lamar County landowner Julia Trigg Crawford says the program is a plea for image control.
"It's only now that they're coming in with what it appears to fix a terrible PR problem," said Trigg Crawford. "That's what companies do when something breaks or leaks or goes awry, they build playgrounds and buy fire trucks and put money into the communities."
The program's announcement came directly after CBS news ran a story on the pipeline's construction problems.
Counties included: Angelina, Chambers, Cherokee, Delta, Fannin, Franklin, Hardin, Harris, Hopkins, Jefferson, Lamar, Liberty, Nacogdoches, Polk, Rusk, Smith, Upshur and Wood.