Manchin, Capito announce ARC grants

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito announced Friday the awarding of almost $1.4 million for economic development projects from the Appalachian Regional Commission.

The $1,379,000 will be divided among several projects throughout West Virginia.

“Appalachian Regional Commission funding supports economic and community development throughout our rural communities in West Virginia. These grants will support the wonderful work Energy Express does with children across our state, invest in nursing education at Potomac State College, bring clean water to families and businesses in Gilbert, and support WorkForce West Virginia as they serve West Virginia workers and businesses. These are important investments in improving our economy and quality of life in the Mountain State,” Manchin, D-W.Va., said.

The ARC was established by Congress in 1965. It is a regional economic development agency representing a partnership of federal, state and local governments, with representation from 13 Appalachian states.

“The Appalachian Regional Commission continues to be an integral partner in bettering the lives of West Virginians,” Capito, R-W.Va., said. “This funding will help provide safe drinking water to West Virginia communities, improve our health workforce, assist small businesses, and promote literacy for West Virginia children. I will continue to support the commission in its critical work of strengthening economic and community development in West Virginia and across Appalachia.”

Among those receiving funding:

• The West Virginia University Research Corporation for the West Virginia Energy Express Initiative will receive $130,000. The West Virginia Energy Express program is a summer literacy and physical activity program for elementary school students. In addition to ARC funds, local sources will provide $32,500, bringing the total project funding to $162,500.

• Potomac State College of WVU will receive $100,000. Potomac State College of WVU will use this funding to purchase medical equipment to outfit a new nursing patient care simulation lab for its campus in Keyser, West Virginia. In addition to ARC funds, local sources will provide $130,500, bringing the total project funding to $230,500.

• The Town of Gilbert will receive $679,000 for the River Bend Road Waterline Extension Project. The project will result in the installation of 13,210 linear feet of water main providing safe and reliable service to 31 households and two businesses. In addition to ARC funds, other federal sources will provide $1,050,000 and local sources will provide $500,000, bringing the total project funding to $2,229,000.

• The West Virginia Development Office for WorkForce West Virginia Competitive Improvement Program will receive $300,000. WorkForce West Virginia anticipates serving at least 1,400 employees in 30 companies and the CIP will aid existing businesses in West Virginia in achieving major advances in their competitive performance.