WASHINGTON– Today, U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger (all D-Md.) announced $319,200 to invest in Harford County’s travel, tourism, and outdoor recreation. This investment through the Economic Development Administration’s Travel, Tourism, and Outdoor Recreation program was funded by the American Rescue Plan which the lawmakers fought to pass.
This funding will be used to construct a public boat pier and dock in Havre de Grace, purchase an electric shuttle for visitors, install electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, and complete the Swan Harbor Trail. The project will create public and private sector jobs while also spurring more day tourism for recreational boaters and providing another natural trail for hikers. These funds will deliver on key elements of the city’s economic plan for water tourism.
“This federal investment recognizes the importance of tourism and outdoor recreation to the Maryland economy and to our communities on the Chesapeake Bay. With this grant award, the EDA has recognized that strengthening our connections to the water enhances Harford County communities, supports local businesses and brings people outdoors to appreciate all our state has to offer,” said Senator Cardin. “Team Maryland will continue to advocate for federal support for Maryland’s economic development, which is so closely linked to the Chesapeake Bay.”
“The COVID-19 pandemic upended travel and tourism, hurting many of our local economies and communities across Maryland. That’s why we fought to pass the American Rescue Plan – to jump-start the economy with targeted relief. From new waterfront piers and hiking trails to electric vehicle charging stations, this funding will provide a boost to Harford County’s tourism and recreation while benefiting Marylanders and folks from outside our state looking to visit. We’ll keep working to invest in our local economies and create new jobs, while building a cleaner, greener future for Maryland,” said Senator Van Hollen.
“Taking care of Maryland’s natural resources are important not just for the health of our ecosystem, but our economy,” said Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger. “They are critical engines for recreation and tourism and therefore jobs. I am proud to have helped secure this federal funding to help Havre de Grace advance its vision as a destination for boaters, hikers and tourists.”
“The City of Havre de Grace is thrilled to receive this significant investment with the essential support of our congressional representatives,” said Mayor William T. Martin. “The funding for a new public boat pier and dock, an electric tourist shuttle bus and charging stations, and the completion of Swan Harbor Trail will greatly benefit citizens and visitors alike.”
The American Rescue Plan included historic investments in Maryland for the tourism industry, broadband infrastructure, education and child care, health care, small businesses, public transit, and more – bringing significant resources directly to Maryland to help workers, families, and local officials combat COVID-19 and recover from the health and economic impacts of the virus.