U.S. Department of Commerce invests $6.5 million in U.S. bailout funds to upgrade civic center and restore road infrastructure on Maryland’s east coast

U.S. Department of Commerce invests $6.5 million in U.S. bailout funds to upgrade civic center and restore road infrastructure on Maryland’s east coast

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is providing $6.5 million in U.S. bailout grants to support the East Coast of Maryland as it recovers from the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

EDA’s investments announced today are:

  • Wicomico County, Maryland will receive a $5.5 million U.S. EDA bailout grant to improve safety and accessibility at the Civic Center, boost tourism and create jobs in the local hospitality industry. The project will be matched with $1.4 million in public and local funds and is expected to create 70 jobs, retain 150 jobs and generate $34.6 million in private investment, according to beneficiary estimates.
  • Somerset County, Maryland will receive a $1 million US bailout grant from the EDA for the restoration and resurfacing of local tourist routes. The project will be matched with $250,000 in local funds and will create 10 jobs, maintain six jobs and generate $100,000 in private investment, according to beneficiary estimates.

“President Biden is committed to providing communities with the resources they need to recover from the pandemic and build a better America in the process,” Commerce Secretary Gina M. Raimondo said. “These EDA investments will increase tourism opportunities in Maryland, create local jobs, and foster economic resilience.”

“The Economic Development Administration is committed to working with communities to support their local pandemic recovery and reconstruction strategies,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Y. Castillo. “The projects announced today will help create diverse regional economies on Maryland’s east coast, while inviting tourists from near and far to visit the state.”

“These recently announced federal investments in Somerset and Wicomico counties will boost tourism and create well-paying jobs in important and sometimes overlooked corners of Maryland, where they will have a significant benefit for local communities,” said Senator Ben Cardin. “It is exactly this type of strategic investment that we envisioned when crafting the US bailout, as the grants will be leveraged with state and local funds to maximize their reach and will also leverage substantial private investment. I appreciate EDA’s recognition of Maryland’s potential and look forward to seeing these investments inspire more people to visit more areas of our great state.

“As our communities recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, one of our top priorities is to provide them with the resources needed to rebuild and grow our local economies,” said Senator Chris Van Hollen. “These investments will help our Shore communities do just that. This $6.5 million in federal funding will help the vital tourism industry in Wicomico and Somerset counties and spur job growth in the process. I will continue to work alongside the Administration and local partners to support the economic development of the Rive and create more paying jobs.

“I am pleased that the Department of Commerce is investing in rural America where the needs of local communities are often overlooked by governments,” said Congressman Andy Harris (MD-01).

This project is funded through the EDA’s competitive $240 million American Rescue Plan Travel, Tourism, and Outdoor Recreation program. The EDA has awarded $510 million in grants to all 50 states and territories in 2021. Both programs are designed to accelerate the recovery of communities that depend on the travel, tourism, and outdoor recreation sectors.

About the United States Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the United States Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing regions across the country for growth and success in the global economy. An agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA invests in communities and supports regional collaboration to create jobs for American workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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