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Appalachian coal towns hit by layoffs to receive funding boost

Written by The Associated Press | Aug 24, 2016 12:13 PM
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Photo by Marie Cusick/StateImpact Pennsylvania

Photo by Marie Cusick/StateImpact Pennsylvania

(Huntington, W. Va.) -- Some 29 projects in Pennsylvania and eight other Appalachian states as well as Texas are being funded by nearly $39 million from a federal initiative.

It's aimed at stimulating economic development in U.S. communities hard hit by coal industry layoffs.

The Appalachian Regional Commission and other agencies announced the projects today at a news conference in Huntington, West Virginia.

The funding comes from $65.8 million made available from the Partnership for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization initiative, or POWER. 

The investments are expected to create or retain more than 3,400 jobs in agriculture, manufacturing and other industries.

The commission says about 23,000 Appalachian coal jobs were lost between 2011 and 2015.

Midstate counties considered a part of Appalachia are Columbia, Juniata, Mifflin, Northumberland, Perry, Schuylkill, Snyder and Union.

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