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Gov. Wolf: $4 Million Awarded to Boost Economic Growth in Coal-Impacted Areas of Pennsylvania’s Appalachian Region


Governor Tom Wolf today announced that more than $4 million has been awarded to six projects in Pennsylvania’s Appalachian Region through the Appalachian Regional Commission’s (ARC) Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization (POWER) initiative.

“Supporting the coal-impacted communities in Pennsylvania is vitally important; the success of the Appalachian Region impacts the entire commonwealth,” said Gov. Wolf. “The six projects receiving funding from ARC will generate new economic opportunities to help improve the quality of life for the region’s residents and further strengthen Pennsylvania’s reputation as the best place to live, work, and play.”

ARC awards funding covering a wide range of program areas. In this round of funding, Pennsylvania’s projects range from entrepreneurship, substance use disorder, economic development, and training programs. Each project promises to enhance the community and economic vitality of the commonwealth.

ARC’s POWER awards in Pennsylvania include:

  • $500,000 to Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (PCA), Creative Entrepreneur Accelerator Program
  • $845,043 Somerset County Foundation for Higher Education, Opioid Education for Allied Health Professionals
  • $509,948 to Southern Alleghenies Planning & Development Commission, Alleghenies Marketplace
  • $1,120,000 to Tri-County Workforce Investment Board, Inc., Steamfitter’s Advanced Employment and Training Program
  • $490,487 to University of Pittsburgh, Applied Data-Driven Methods (ADDM) Certificate at University of Pittsburgh School of Computing & Information
  • $669,625 to Westmoreland County Community College, Tristate Pathways 2.0: Connecting to the Right Skills and to Jobs aka TEAM Pathways 2.0: Connections that Work 

“I am pleased to congratulate the commonwealth’s six POWER awardees, whose projects will provide economic and community-focused efforts to invest in local economies in the Appalachian Region,” said Department of Community and Economic Development Acting Secretary Neil Weaver. “Across coal-impacted counties, this funding will provide economic growth and new investments for years to come.”

Since POWER launched in 2015, ARC has invested nearly $316.6 million in 393 projects across 358 coal-impacted counties in the U.S. The nearly $73 million awarded in 2021 is projected to create/retain more than 10,383 jobs and attract nearly $527.3 million in leveraged private investments.

“The work of our local partners is integral to making our POWER projects come to life,” said ARC Federal Co-Chair Gayle Manchin. “Pennsylvania is a great advocate for Appalachia’s coal-impacted communities, and I look forward to seeing how its grantees help contribute to our region’s growth and success.”

The POWER Initiative targets federal resources to help communities and regions affected by job losses in coal mining, coal power plant operations, and coal-related supply chain industries. By encouraging economic diversity, enhancing job training and re-employment opportunities, creating jobs in existing and new industries, and attracting new investments, it supports efforts to create a more vibrant economic future for coal-impacted communities.

A list of all awardee projects, and more information about the POWER initiative, is available on the Appalachian Regional Commission website.

For more information about economic development programs in Pennsylvania or the Department of Community and Economic Development, visit the DCED website.

The Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (PCA) is a state agency under the Office of the Governor. The mission of the PCA is to strengthen the cultural, educational and economic vitality of Pennsylvania's communities through the arts. By leveraging the immense potential of Pennsylvania's arts and cultural sector, the PCA supports jobs, builds community, inspires lifelong learning, promotes the commonwealth nationally and internationally, and sparks innovation.

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