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7/14/2014

Corbett Administration Announces the Release of Economic Growth Initiative Grants

News for Immediate Release

July 14, 2014

Grants to support expansion of JWF Industries operations in Cambria County and the acquisition and construction of a commercial and technology center in Blair County.

Harrisburg – Governor Tom Corbett today announced the award of two Economic Growth Initiative (EGI) grants in Blair and Cambria counties. 

The first, to JWF Industries of Cambria Country, will be used to support the expansion of its Cramer Pike facility.  JWF Industries is a leading manufacturer of portable fluid storage tanks and above ground water enclosures that support the natural gas industry.

Over the last year, JWF Industries has been renovating a 160,000 square foot facility that was once a World War II munitions and rail car factory and once housed United Industrial Mechanical Services.  The company looks to double the number of employees to nearly 200 workers within the next five years. 

JWF Industries received a $1 million EGI in 2013.  This round’s grant is $1million as well.

The second EGI grant, awarded to the Altoona-Blair County Development Corporation will support the site acquisition and construction of a retail, commercial and office complex in Altoona.  When completed, the location will house nearly 48,000 square foot, 12-screen theater complex, 13,000 square feet of retail space, 6,200 square feet of restaurant space, a four-story hotel and a 26,000 square foot office building. 

The Altoona EGI is in the amount of $2 million.  It is expected to help create and retain nearly 800 jobs and generate $1,850,000 in annual tax revenue for the area.

“Economic Growth Initiatives are energizing local economies around our state,” said Corbett.  “Jobs are being created through these projects.  We are transforming oft-neglected parts of our towns into thriving centers of commerce and recreation.  Both of these projects exemplify the spirit and goals of this program.”

In 2012, Corbett reformed the state’s method of funding Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program with a significant redesign, making the process more transparent and objective.  Projects are now selected based upon their job-creation potential, their economic impact, as well as their viability and construction readiness.

Prior to Corbett taking office, the state’s spending and borrowing for capital redevelopment assistance had become unsustainable for the state and its taxpayers, growing from $400 million in 1986 to slightly more than $4 billion in 2010.  Corbett also said that the program had strayed considerably from its intended purpose of encouraging and assisting job growth through regional economic development projects. 

Last round, the Corbett Administration announced 58 new Economic Growth Initiative grants, totaling more than $133 million. The announced projects are expected to create more than 45,000 jobs in 24 counties across the state.

For a full listing of selections and for more information, visit the Budget Office online at www.budget.state.pa.us and select the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program link.

Media contact: Jay Pagni, 717-783-1116

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Editor’s note: For statutory and legislative purposes, the Economic Grow Initiative program will continue to be known as the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program.​

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