Last night, U.S. Rep. Matt Cartwright led the charge against the proposed Chabot Amendment, which aimed to zero out the funding for the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC). The amendment, which failed by a vote of 273-147, was offered as part of the Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act.
"ARC's purpose is to close the economic gap between Appalachia and the rest of the nation, to bring the region's 420 counties and 25 million people into the nation's economic mainstream," said Cartwright. "The purpose of this amendment is to strip the Commission, as well as other Commissions and Authorities, of funding."
The Commission is a federal-state partnership that works with the people of Appalachia to create opportunities for self-sustaining economic development and improved quality of life. The Commission is a partnership of 420 counties, including Carbon, Lackawanna, Luzerne, Monroe and Schuylkill.
"The ARC has greatly benefited Northeastern Pennsylvania by providing funding for projects such as business development, education and job training, telecommunications, infrastructure, community development, housing, and transportation," said Cartwright.
ARC has invested in hundreds of projects across the Region that have created thousands of new jobs, improved local water and sewer systems, increased school readiness, expanded access to health care, assisted local communities with strategic planning, and provided technical and managerial assistance to emerging businesses.
The failed amendment also sought to zero out funding for the Delta Regional Authority, the Denali Commission, the Northern Border Regional Commission, and the Southeast Crescent Regional Commission.