Source: United States Senator for West Virginia Shelley Moore Capito
Trip highlights opportunities, challenges related to economic growth, development in West Virginia
CHARLESTON, W.Va. – U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) today hosted Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) Federal Co-Chairman Tim Thomas in West Virginia for a series of site visits and roundtable discussions to highlight recent ARC investments in the state, as well as new opportunities and challenges related to economic growth and development. The ARC plays an important role in economic development across the 13-state Appalachian region by supporting infrastructure projects, workforce development, and other activities aimed at improving economic opportunities. The day’s visits included a visit to the West Virginia Hive in Beckley, an entrepreneurial support network serving several locations in Southern West Virginia, and the Cabell County Career Technology Center.
“The ARC plays such an important role in our state—particularly when it comes to diversifying and strengthening West Virginia’s economy,” Senator Capito said. “Today’s visits allowed us the opportunity to see and hear about the ARC’s good work and highlighted just how beneficial the ARC has been and will continue to be for communities like Beckley, Charleston, Huntington, and beyond. I was glad to have Tim Thomas, as well as other ARC folks, with me today and appreciate their hard work and partnership with our office to address our current needs and maximize what can be done in communities like these.”
“I was pleased to meet so many West Virginians who are leveraging ARC investments to create opportunities for their state and their communities during today’s site visits. I want to thank Senator Capito for her support for ARC and for organizing this visit,” ARC Federal Co-Chairman Thomas said. “I look forward to our continued cooperation to help West Virginia invest in its resources, infrastructure, and people to build strong, resilient communities.”
Senator Capito recently introduced three bills that would help build and improve transportation infrastructure and encourage economic development in Appalachia: the Appalachian Regional Commission Reauthorization Act, the Advancing Infrastructure Development (AID) in Appalachia Act, and the Appalachian Regional Energy Hub Initiative Act. All three measures are included in the comprehensive, bipartisan America’s Transportation Infrastructure Act of 2019, legislation Senator Capito and other Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee leaders introduced and the committee approved unanimously last month. Specifically, these measures would reauthorize and improve the ARC through 2025 at a level of $180 million, with $20 million of that authorization specifically dedicated to broadband deployment; provide $5 million to assist in the development of an Appalachian ethane storage and trading hub; and make more funds available for the completion of segments of the Appalachian Development Highway System like Corridor H.
Senator Capito and Co-Chairman Thomas discuss economic development needs and challenges with local business leaders.
Senator Capito shares with Co-Chairman Thomas some of the innovative and entrepreneurial work being done at the West Virginia Hive in Beckley.
Graphic design students demonstrate some of the projects they are working on at the Cabell County Career Technology Center.
A Cabell County Career Technology Center student explains to Senator Capito and Co-Chairman Thomas some of her graphic design work.