The Great American Getaway: Governor Shapiro Announces $7M Boost for Pennsylvania Communities

Keystone Communities ProgramCredit: Commonwealth Media Services

BEDFORD, PA — To bolster Pennsylvania’s main streets, Governor Josh Shapiro and the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Secretary Rick Siger recently unveiled a nearly $7 million investment through the Keystone Communities Program (KCP). This funding, aimed at supporting 49 community improvement projects across 25 counties, was announced during the Governor’s The Great American Getaway RV tour, an initiative promoting Pennsylvania’s burgeoning new tourism brand, and small businesses.

Pennsylvania, the Governor emphasized, is the “Great American Getaway,” evoking the charm and appeal of localities like Bedford County, where 3 projects have been earmarked for support this year. The KCP funding helps support improvements like new sidewalks, upgraded streetlights, facade renovations for small businesses, and the creation of more affordable housing.

“I’ve been traveling across Pennsylvania this week, showing off our great Commonwealth and the places and people that make it so special. We’ve got small towns like Bedford, with a quaint main street, incredible shops, and friendly people ready to welcome travelers looking for a relaxing weekend, ” said Governor Josh Shapiro. “The Main Streets Matter initiative will help us grow small businesses, support our communities, create opportunity for more Pennsylvanians, and welcome more visitors to our towns.

An integral component of the Governor’s budget is the $25 million for the new Main Street Matters initiative, which builds upon the Keystone Communities program. The initiative strategically aims to support small businesses, downtowns, and main streets statewide, contributing to community growth and increased tourism influx.

Underlining the importance of the local economy, Secretary Rick Siger emphasized the Governor’s commitment to strategic investments that empower local leaders to realize the full potential of their economies. Such initiatives are transforming main streets and downtowns across Pennsylvania, spurring the success and prosperity of small businesses.

Governor Shapiro’s 2024-25 budget proposes a $25 million investment in the new Main Street Matters program, a measure designed to modernize the successes of the KCP and support the downtowns, main streets, and commercial corridors integral to Pennsylvania’s communities.

The state’s commitment to economic development and community investment is clear. Through initiatives like the Keystone Communities Program, Pennsylvania is cultivating economic success for its downtown districts, main streets, and neighborhoods, allowing communities and their residents to flourish.

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