Governor Robert Bentley on Sunday co-chaired the first Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) meeting since being elected co-chair in December and approved a resolution concerning the allocation of funds for ARC states.
Alabama's federal allocation for Fiscal Year 2012 was $4.6 million. Sunday afternoon, ARC members approved a funding allocation formula which is expected to give Alabama $5 million in FY 2013 after Congressional budget approval.
Alabama has 37 counties located within the ARC region. Those counties are eligible to receive portions of the state's federal funding for various economic development projects. Projects are initiated at the community level with assistance from local development districts. Alabama's regional planning commissions recommend projects for ARC funding to Governor Bentley.
"The Appalachian Regional Commission has played an important role over the years in strengthening the economy of Alabama and the ARC region, and I look forward to building on that progress," Governor Bentley said. "Today's meeting was productive, and governors of ARC states are committed to finding new economic development opportunities and improving the quality of life of people in the ARC region."
The ARC meeting was held in Washington, D.C. and coincided with the annual National Governor's Association winter meeting.
The ARC was created by Congress in 1965 as an effort to focus additional resources on economic development initiatives in the Appalachian Mountain Region. For a map of counties covered by the ARC, see the following link: http://www.arc.gov/research/MapsofAppalachia.asp?MAP_ID=55.
Additional details on ARC program areas can be found here: http://www.arc.gov/program_areas/index.asp.