U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $5 Million in American Rescue Plan Funds for Water System Upgrades to Spur Business Expansion in Hazard, Kentucky
May 26 2022
Award is Part of the Department of Commerce’s $300 million Coal Communities Commitment
WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $5 million grant to the city of Hazard, Kentucky, for construction of a new water treatment plant and ancillary infrastructure. This grant is funded by the American Rescue Plan and EDA’s $300 million Coal Communities Commitment.
This project will construct a new water treatment plant and related infrastructure to support industrial expansion in the Coal Fields Regional Industrial Park and other local business needs in area. Hazard and the surrounding region have been impacted from fluctuations in the energy economy. The EDA investment will be matched with $1.8 million in local funds and is expected to create 364 jobs, retain 351 jobs and generate $13 million in private investment, according to grantee estimates.
“This EDA investment will provide the water infrastructure needed to support business expansion and attraction plans, creating a stronger, more robust regional economy," said Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo.
“The Economic Development Administration is pleased to support locally-driven strategies to boost business recovery efforts in Kentucky,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Y. Castillo. “Expanding the industrial sector’s presence in the region will create new opportunities as the community works to diversify their economy.”
“This investment will allow for continued job growth and economic expansion in Hazard, both now and in the future,” said Governor Andy Beshear. “The immediate impact of this grant will be huge, but investments like this contribute to the long-term success of our Kentucky communities. When folks work together on the federal, state and local levels, we can tackle problems and make life better for generations to come.”
“This new water treatment plant is vital to the clean water supply for families and businesses in Perry County and will go a long way to support growth at the Coal Fields Regional Industrial Park as we continue to recruit new jobs and industry to Eastern Kentucky,” said Congressman Hal Rogers (KY-05). “We have made great strides to expand access to clean, reliable water resources in Kentucky’s Appalachian region, and this project is another important step in the right direction.”
This project was made possible by the regional planning efforts led by the Kentucky River Area Development District (KRADD). EDA funds KRADD to bring together the public and private sectors to create an economic development roadmap to strengthen the regional economy, support private capital investment and create jobs.
This project is funded under EDA’s American Rescue Plan Economic Adjustment Assistance program, which makes $500 million in Economic Adjustment Assistance grants available to American communities. The Economic Adjustment Assistance program is EDA’s most flexible program, and grants made under this program will help hundreds of communities across the nation plan, build, innovate, and put people back to work through construction or non-construction projects designed to meet local needs.
EDA’s Coal Communities Commitment allocates $300 million of EDA’s $3 billion American Rescue Plan appropriation to support coal communities as they recover from the pandemic and to help them create new jobs and opportunities, including through the creation or expansion of a new industry sector.
About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation’s regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA invests in communities and supports regional collaboration in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.