Belomar Regional Council Receives $215,000 Grant | News, Sports, Jobs

WHEELING – Belomar Regional Council recently received its latest round of planning funding – $215,000 – which will pay for salaries and work related to finding grants for municipalities and other organizations.

Scott Hicks, executive director of the Belomar Regional Council, said the Federal Economic Development Association money, guaranteed by U.S. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, RW.Va., and U.S. Sen. Manchin, DW.Va. , is awarded every three years now, but was previously awarded annually.

“It’s our annual planning grant…to do technical assistance on economic development and community projects. This is a three-year funding. It helps us to mount the projects, mainly,” he said, adding that each EDA region receives money for this purpose. “It’s a big help for us. …Before a grant is funded, we must have the staff to apply for the funding.

A recent example of funding secured by Belomar was a $1.9 million grant for an industrial water main in Wetzel County that will help provide water for use by the oil and gas industry. Another example was a $6.6 million grant used by Oglebay Park to renovate Wilson Lodge.

The work done on writing grants for municipalities must be precise, as the process is very competitive. He noted that after winning a grant, Belomar usually sees the process through, also acting as the grant administrator.

Belomar’s funding was part of a total of $442,500 awarded to five West Virginia communities.

“Through my leadership role on the Environment and Public Works Committee, I continue to oversee and advocate for investments that help West Virginia communities plan and best prepare for the job creation and economic development. The funding announced today will provide resources to Princeton, Wheeling, South Charleston, Fairmont and Huntington to support these efforts to maximize future private and public sector partnerships at the local level,” Capito said in a press release.

Manchin added that investing in communities “drives economic growth and creates well-paying, long-term jobs.”

“Today’s announcement is great news and part of the critical investments needed to help our communities thrive and succeed across the state,” Manchin said in a news release. “EDA continues to be a strong partner for West Virginia and I look forward to seeing the positive impacts of this funding for years to come. As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I will continue to advocate in favor of resources to support economic opportunity in Mountain State.

Besides the Belomar Regional Council, other regions and their rewards include:

— $70,000 – Regional Intergovernmental Council, South Charleston/Kanawha County. ;

— $70,000 – Region 2 Planning and Development Board, Huntington/Cabell County;

— $52,500 – Region I Planning and Development Council, Princeton County/Mercer. ; and

— $35,000 – Area VI Planning and Development Board, Fairmont/Marion County.

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Elna M. Lemons