- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 15, 2015

VILONIA, Ark. (AP) - An Arkansas town damaged by an April 2014 tornado will receive more than $1 million in federal grant money to build a safe room.

Arkansas Sens. John Boozman and Tom Cotton and Rep. French Hill announced the award of $1,049,438 from the Federal Emergency Management Agency Wednesday.

Vilonia, about 33 miles north of Little Rock, was devastated by an April 2014 tornado that killed 16 people in Arkansas.

A new intermediate school was almost finished when the tornado leveled it. The grant will pay for a safe room to house up to 1,048 people and withstand winds up to 250 mph in that rebuilt school.

Hundreds of Vilonia residents sheltered in 2014 in a similar safe room built with grant money received after a deadly 2011 tornado.

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