CHARLESTON- A training kitchen in the culinary school in the downtown campus of West Virginia University at Parkersburg is among the projects recommended by the governor to the Appalachian Regional Commission Investment Program.
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin Tuesday said he recommended eight projects for grants totalling more than $4.7 million.
"From water and sewer systems to education and entrepreneurship, the projects I've recommended for funding all help generate economic development," the governor said. "I appreciate the commitment shown by ARC as well as our local partners. I believe we can, together, continue to grow our economy and provide a brighter future for West Virginia."
Photo by Jody Murphy
The WVU-Parkersburg downtown campus has been recommended for a $150,000 grant.
The recommendations include $150,000 for the culinary school at the WVU-Parkersburg downtown campus on Market Street for a commercial training kitchen. When the new downtown campus will open has yet to be determined.
According to the release from the governor, the project will provide commercial equipment for a kitchen incubator to train culinary students, provide a platform for local food entrepreneurs to develop food products and offer small business incubator services for the development of new food industry niches.
"The project will assist in the development of a trained workforce in the regional food sector, grow local food-based enterprises and strengthen local food initiatives," the release stated.
Other projects recommended include:
The grants are recommendations that must be approved by the commission, the governor's office said.
The West Virginia Development Office administers the state's ARC program, which is a partnership of federal, state and local participants providing financial and technical assistance for economic development and infrastructure projects. The mission of ARC is to assist the Appalachian region, comprised of 13 states including West Virginia, to become more competitive with the rest of the nation in terms of job opportunities, education, health and other socio-economic factors. ARC designates each county in each state with a county economic level: distressed, at-risk, transitional, competitive, or attainment.