Grant projects include public water systems, education and workforce development
CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin today announced recommendations for the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) Investment Program grants. The recommended projects total more than $4.3 million in grant funding.
“From public water systems to education and workforce development, the projects I’ve recommended for funding all help foster statewide economic opportunities and improve the quality of life for all West Virginians,” Gov. Tomblin said. “I’m grateful for the ARC’s continued commitment, as well as the dedication shown by our federal and local partners, and I’m proud of our state’s continued support of projects that strengthen the foundation of what makes West Virginia such a wonderful place to call home.”
The West Virginia Development Office administers the state’s ARC program, which is a partnership of federal, state and local participants providing financial and technical assistance for economic development and infrastructure projects. The mission of the ARC is to assist the Appalachian region, comprised of 13 states including West Virginia, to become more competitive as it relates to job opportunities, education, health and other socio-economic factors.
Projects recommended for ARC funding include:
CALHOUN (Distressed County)
Pleasant Hill Public Service District
Leaf Bank Run, Upper Back Fork, Leading Creek Water Extension
The project will replace existing water line and extend public water service to the communities of Leaf Bank, Upper Back Fork and Leading Creek in Calhoun County. Currently, customers in the project area are served by private wells that are unreliable or provide a substandard quality of water. The project will serve 37 new customers and 150 existing customers for a total of 187 customers.
Coalfield Development Corporation
Quality Jobs Initiative
The project will provide employment, training and mentoring services for dislocated workers ages 18 to 25, providing them with building construction and deconstruction skills while improving housing and removing dilapidated properties. The project will allow the existing program to expand into Lincoln and Mingo counties.
Gilmer County Public Service District
Route 5 and Hattie Road Water Extension
The project will extend public water service to areas along Route 5 and Hattie Road in Gilmer and Calhoun counties. Currently, customers rely upon private wells that are unreliable and empty during drier months of the year. The project will serve 23 new customers and support education and job training through providing public water service to the Calhoun-Gilmer Career Center.
Jobs for West Virginia Graduates, Inc.
Jobs for West Virginia Graduates
The project will provide at-risk high school students with specialized instruction and guidance, including tutoring and mentoring services, career development training and leadership development. The result will strengthen graduation rates and employability for at-risk students. The project will serve an estimated 120 students.
Marshall University Research Corporation
School-Community Partnerships for Oral Health
The purpose of the project is to increase access to preventive dental services for children through school-community partnerships. School-based clinics will be organized in underserved areas of the state to provide dental screenings for children, including referral for follow-up care. The project will serve an estimated 4,000 students and increase health and well-being in our most vulnerable populations in the state’s ARC-designated distressed and at-risk counties.
Ohio-West Virginia Youth Leadership Association
The project will use the Rural Entrepreneurship through Action Learning (REAL) curriculum to train and certify 20 teachers as REAL instructors and hold an entrepreneurship camp for 38 high school students. The project will infuse entrepreneurship, team building and leadership skills in youth and build capacity in teachers, leading to a stronger entrepreneurial culture and greater business development in the state.
ROANE (Distressed County)
Clay-Roane Public Service District
Amma Industrial Park Water Extension
The project will extend public water service to the Amma Industrial Park in southern Roane County. The project will serve three commercial customers currently located in the park and assist in attracting additional commercial or industrial expansion in the future.
WAYNE (Distressed County)
Crum Public Service District
Route 152 Phase II Water Extension
The project will extend water service to the communities of West Fork of Twelvepole Creek, Big Branch, Licking Branch and Ferguson Branch in southern Wayne County. Currently, the customers in the project area rely upon private wells that produce unreliable quantity or poor quality. The project will serve 165 new customers, including an elementary school.