Grants Aim to Boost Economic Growth in Eastern Kentucky

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PIKEVILLE, Ky. (AP) – Grants totaling $34.4 million have been announced in an effort to spur economic development and job creation in eastern Kentucky – a region hard hit by the coal sector’s downturn.

Officials said Friday the grants will support projects impacting 14 counties.

The support includes nearly $4.8 million for Pikeville Medical Center to develop a children’s hospital and pediatric clinic. The facility is expected to provide health care services for more than 100,000 children.

Leslie County will receive more than $2 million to develop a program expanding internet connectivity and providing job training.

The grants were announced by U.S. Rep. Harold “Hal” Rogers and Gov. Matt Bevin during the Shaping Our Appalachian Region, or SOAR, summit. Rogers says grants will help advance health care, enhance tourism, improve infrastructure and create jobs.