Federal money available for coal communities

MANCHESTER, Ky. (AP) — More than 200 people have attended a workshop in eastern Kentucky to learn about how to apply for portions of $65 million in federal funding to help revive economically depressed coal counties.

As coal mines continue to close across Appalachia, the race is on to figure out a viable way to replace them. This year, President Barack Obama’s administration has made more than $65 million in federal money available for projects to help coal counties from Pennsylvania through the Carolinas.

The application period for the program, dubbed the Power Initiative, began last month. Officials say the response has been strong.

Gregg Hewins attended Friday’s workshop to learn how to apply for funding for agricultural projects. He says places like Knott County have the opportunity to increase farming with the closure of so many coal mines.


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