Curtis Tate Published

W.Va. Awarded $15M In Grants For Job Development


West Virginia will receive nearly $15 million in grants from the Appalachian Regional Commission.

The $14.7 million in POWER grants will be split among 15 recipients statewide.

POWER stands for Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Development.

According to the ARC, the $47 million in awards for the entire region is the largest under the program since its launch in 2015.

Awardees include the Summers County Commission, the Boone County Community and Economic Development Corp., Grow Ohio Valley, the Marshall University Research Corp., the Bluefield Economic Development Authority, the Mountain State Educational Services Cooperative and the City of Elkins.

The program is intended to assist areas that have lost jobs in coal mining and power plants by creating or training workers for new jobs in tourism, broadband and entrepreneurship.

Last week, the ARC awarded another $4 million in grants to West Virginia.

The town of Oceana, in Wyoming County, will receive about half the total funding, according to U.S. Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito.

The Oak Hill Sanitary Board, the Marshall University Research Corp. and the West Virginia Rural Water Association will split the rest.

The funds will be used to update water and wastewater systems, as well as remove or renovate abandoned buildings.

The ARC also said last week that it will offer funding to Local Development Districts throughout the region. The grants of up to $100,000 will help communities hire staff to leverage opportunities from last year’s American Rescue Plan and the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.

Special consideration will be given to distressed areas, coal and power plant communities and historically marginalized populations.