WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Representatives Matt Cartwright (PA-08) and Hal Rogers (KY-05) introduced the Transforming Hiring in Rural Industries and Vital Economies (THRIVE) Act to create new economic opportunities in rural areas.
“At a time when urban issues get plenty of attention, it’s our responsibility to make sure small towns don’t get left behind,” said Rep. Cartwright. “That’s why I’m proud to join my Republican colleague Hal Rogers in this bipartisan effort to maximize investment in rural communities. This bill directs federal dollars toward critical projects to improve health care services, expand broadband internet access, assist small businesses and strengthen schools.”
“This bill ensures that rural America is not an afterthought and has a prominent voice in Washington,” said Rep. Rogers. “I’m pleased that this legislation will bring together key decisionmakers to prioritize rural needs and make sure federal investments are having the best impact possible in the areas that need it most.”
The THRIVE Act would reinstate the White House Rural Council, which was disbanded in 2017, reviving a federal effort to invest in our nation’s rural areas.
Among the programs overseen by the Rural Council was the “Livable Communities Initiative,” which supported local government efforts to improve transportation and develop housing in small towns. The Council also worked in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Education to provide online educational resources for teachers and students in rural communities, which was bolstered at the time by a $2 billion commitment by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for broadband deployment across the country. Additionally, the Rural Council launched the National Water Quality Initiative to work with farmers to improve conservation of working lands and ensure they can be used for years to come.