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August 10, 2021
Press Release

(WASHINGTON, DC) – Today, Representative Conor Lamb (PA-17) was joined by Representative David McKinley (WV-01) in introducing the bipartisan Resources to Expand Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization (RE-POWER) Act, legislation that would provide an additional $1 billion in funding for the Appalachian Regional Commission’s (ARC) POWER Initiative. 

Since 2015, ARC has invested over $238 million in 293 projects touching 353 counties across Appalachia through the POWER Initiative, including 45 projects in Pennsylvania.  Together, these investments are projected to create or retain more than 26,000 jobs, leverage more than $1.1 billion in additional private investment into Appalachia’s economy, and prepare tens of thousands of workers and students for opportunities in entrepreneurship, broadband development, tourism, and other growing industry sectors.  POWER investments also support workforce-to-recovery and other comprehensive strategies to strengthen Appalachia’s economic recovery.

“Too many people continue to struggle to make ends meet across our region,” said Lamb.  “Investing in the Appalachian Regional Commission will support programs that will fuel job creation and economic opportunity.  The RE-POWER Act is a smart investment that will pay big dividends for western PA and beyond.”

“The REPOWER Act will provide a critical lifeline for West Virginia coal communities that are struggling to rebuild their economies,” said McKinley.  “This funding is significant, and will go a long way towards providing the training and economic diversification necessary to transition towards new and expanding job opportunities.”

In FY 2021, Congress appropriated $180 million for ARC total.  President Biden’s FY 2022 Budget Proposal requests $235 million for ARC, as well as an additional $1 billion specifically for the POWER program.  The RE-POWER Act would authorize this additional $1 billion to scale up the existing POWER program.

The RE-POWER Act is endorsed by Reimagine Appalachia and its dozens of coalition members, including PennFuture, Keystone Research Center, National Wildlife Federation, Black Women Rising, Policy Matters Ohio and Ohio Interfaith Power & Light.

Visit Lamb’s website to learn more about the Resources to Expand Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization Act.