Press Release

June 17, 2011

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Barbara A. Mikulski (both D-MD) today announced that the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) has awarded two grants totaling $180,000 to projects in Western Maryland.  Hagerstown Community College received an ARC grant that will benefit 30 students working towards an Associates in Applied Science degree.  The Garrett County Board of Commissioners received an ARC grant to make electrical upgrades at McHenry Business Park, which officials expect to serve 10 businesses and create 50 new jobs.   

“These grants will bring new jobs and strengthen educational opportunities in Western Maryland,” Senator Cardin said. “The funding for McHenry Business Park will strengthen Garrett County’s economy by bringing high-tech businesses and jobs to the community.  The grant to Hagerstown Community College will help give students the education and training they need to succeed in today’s workforce.”   

“I’m so proud that these funds will help the region build the infrastructure and the workforce it needs to attract new high-tech businesses, jobs and economic development to Western Maryland,” Senator Mikulski said. “I will continue to fight for federal grants like these that invest in Maryland communities and future economic opportunities.”

Hagerstown Community College will use its $73,000 ARC grant to purchase equipment for its Digital Instrumentation & Process Control project.  The project will provide students with hands-on training using software, laboratory equipment and other materials.  The college anticipates that during the first two years of the project, at least 8 students will have completed the program and that 22 students will still be enrolled and working towards completion.  In addition to ARC funds, Hagerstown Community College will provide $73,000, bringing the total project funding to $146,000.

The Garrett County Board of Commissioners will use its $107,000 ARC grant to extend power lines to the McHenry Business Park, which is owned and operated by the county.  The county hopes the electrical upgrade will attract high-power users such as technology-based and small component businesses to the park.  The improvements will help the park realize its full potential as an employment center.  In addition to ARC funds, local sources will provide $107,000, bringing the total project funding to $214,000.