DCED 2021 Year-in-Review: Wolf Administration Investments Create Good Paying Jobs and Stronger, Safer Communities Across PA

Harrisburg, PA – Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Secretary Dennis Davin today highlighted some of the department’s significant investments in 2021 and how that support is creating good paying jobs and strengthening communities for years to come.

“The Wolf administration recognizes that successful businesses depend on vibrant communities, and vice versa,” said Sec. Davin. “DCED provides financial resource offers to growing businesses that already call Pennsylvania home and those looking to locate here. These strategic investments help companies thrive, create good paying jobs for our workers, and boost the local economy. We also fund a multitude of local projects across the commonwealth that ultimately make communities stronger, safer, and more attractive for residents and businesses alike.”

Pandemic Relief

The Wolf administration secured $145 million to launch the COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program (CHIRP) which successfully provided pandemic relief grants to nearly 6,000 restaurants and hospitality industry businesses in all 67 counties. Helping the businesses and their employees who made sacrifices for their communities during the pandemic was a major priority for the administration. DCED provided the assistance through trusted local partners that understood the needs in their communities.

The Vaccine Outreach Grant Program is a new program created in 2021 to help grassroots organizations across the commonwealth encourage hesitant Pennsylvanians to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

There have been 65 grants, totaling $2.5 million, awarded so far through the Vaccine Outreach Grant Program.

Good Paying Jobs

Pennsylvania is an economic powerhouse with a robust and diverse economy that rivals the size of many countries. The commonwealth has the right environment to empower companies and help them grow.

One of DCED’s top priorities is to support job creation through its economic development and business expansion programs. The Governor’s Action Team is an experienced group of economic development professionals who report directly to the governor and work with businesses that are considering locating or expanding in Pennsylvania.

In 2021, the Governor’s Action Team worked to protect 25,000 Pennsylvania jobs by helping to create 7,000 jobs and retain 18,000 jobs through offers of $49 million in state assistance to 48 businesses that are investing $2 billion into projects.

Following are just a few of the job creation projects made possible in 2021 through the Governor’s Action Team:

  • Advanced Acoustic Concepts investing $1.2 million, creating 36 new jobs (Fayette County
  • Chance Aluminum Corp. investing $18.5 million, creating 100 new jobs (Lycoming County)
  • Chewy Inc. investing $25 million, creating 550 new jobs (Luzerne County)
  • Clemens Food Group investing $228 million, creating 90 new jobs (Montgomery County)
  • DelGrosso Foods investing $60 million, creating 50 new jobs (Blair County)
  • Sharp investing $43 million, creating 335 new jobs (Lehigh Valley)
  • Truck-Lite investing $1.3 million, creating 90 new jobs (Erie County)
Stronger, Safer Communities

From urban cityscapes to countryside communities and everything in between, Pennsylvanians can find the perfect place to live, work, and play. The commonwealth’s cost of living is extremely competitive with surrounding states, our real estate is affordable, and our healthcare system offers some of the best hospitals in the nation.

DCED supports good stewardship and sustainable development initiatives, and provides strategic technical assistance, training, and financial resources to help make communities across the commonwealth stronger and safer.

The Neighborhood Assistance Program encourages private sector investment in non-profit community projects by providing tax credits to businesses that donate capital to address neighborhood and community initiatives.

In 2021, 220 statewide Neighborhood Assistance Program projects were approved, totaling $36 million.

Following are some of the 2021 Neighborhood Assistance Program project awards that were highlighted during a visit by the Wolf administration:

The Keystone Communities Program supports local initiatives that grow and stabilize neighborhoods and communities, encourages the creation of partnerships between the public and private sectors in the community, and enhances the overall quality of life for residents.

In 2021, 225 Keystone Communities Program projects were approved, totaling nearly $29 million. A portion of these funds were used to support the COVID-19 Relief-Supporting Elm and Main (SEAM) program to assist Elm and Main Street organizations economically impacted by COVID-19. Grants were provided to 44 organizations with awards totaling nearly $2 million.

Gov. Wolf announced the most recent round of funding awards for 34 statewide projects on December 20.

Following are a few examples of how the Keystone Communities Program supported important projects across the state in 2021:

For more information about the Wolf administration’s commitment to community and economic development, visit the DCED website, and be sure to stay up-to-date with all of our agency news on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Penny Ickes, dcedpress@pa.gov

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