Millions of dollars in federal funding that was recently approved for various projects in Santa Barbara County, could finally get construction underway for Santa Maria's Japanese Cultural Center.
Of the $16 million approved for the county projects, $500,000 will go toward supporting the construction of the new community center.
According to Rep. Salud Carbajal, who led efforts to secure the federal dollars, says the 10,000-foot facility will feature memorabilia documenting the lives of early Japanese immigrants in Santa Maria.
Its construction is part of the 7-acre Smith Enos History Farm House Project.
The project is a partnership with the Japanese Community Center, Inc, which has donated an additional $350,000 for the construction of the new facility.