October 17, 2022

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced the Appalachian Regional Commission’s (ARC) Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization (POWER) Initiative has awarded grants to six organizations in Eastern Ohio. These investments, totaling $5,783,726, will improve broadband services, expand workforce development initiatives, and facilitate economic growth throughout the region.

“Rural communities have been overlooked for too long. If we want to promote economic development throughout Ohio, we need to ensure that businesses and communities have the tools and resources they need,” said Brown. “Investments like these help communities in Ohio create jobs and attract businesses to the area. I’ll continue to fight for funding for the Appalachian Regional Commission, so it can continue to empower our communities.”

The awards include:

  • $1,999,000 grant to Carroll County for the Connecting Underserved Carroll County project. The project will build 86 miles of fiberoptic network infrastructure to connect 11 communities to reliable and affordable broadband services. The project will serve 384 homes and 53 businesses.
  • $1,500,000 grant to Rural Action, Inc., in The Plains for the Appalachian RESILIENCY project. The project builds on the region’s natural resources to address workforce development; green infrastructure; and the processing, aggregation, and distribution of agroforestry products in Ohio, Virginia, and West Virginia.
  • $1,381,028 grant to Access Tusc: Bridges to Wellness Pathways Community HUB in Dover for the Rural Employment Advocating for Community Health (REACH) project. The project will implement a Level 1 Certified Pathways Community HUB—a nationally-recognized approach to addressing social determinants of health—to improve overall population health in eight communities.
  • $803,698 grant to Washington State Community College (WSCC) in Marietta for the Expanding the Nursing Workforce in Appalachia project. The grant will fund and help launch a second Associate Degree of Nursing program and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree program at WSCC.
  • $50,000 grant to Ohio University in Athens for the FlyOhio: Planning for Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) in Ohio’s Appalachian Region project. The project will fund a report documenting an AAM economic development strategy for Ohio’s Appalachian counties.
  • $50,000 grant to the Appalachia Ohio Manufacturers Coalition (AOMC) in Marietta for the Thornton Ohio Institute of Technology project. The project will create a strategic plan to inform a comprehensive career pathway toward manufacturing and machine-based jobs for Southeast Ohio.

ARC is an economic development agency of the federal government. It has a mission to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in the Appalachian region. POWER is a congressionally-funded initiative that targets federal resources to help communities and regions that have been affected by job losses in coal mining, coal power plant operations, and coal-related supply chain industries due to the changing economics of America’s energy production.  Funding for this investment was made possible through the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), also known as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which Brown helped to write and pass.