Wolf Administration Highlights New Funding to Address Blight in Northwest PA

Sharon, PA – Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Secretary Dennis Davin was joined by state and local officials, community members, and stakeholders today to highlight the Wolf Administration’s approval of new funding to rehabilitating blighted areas in Mercer County. Through the project, $55,000 in funding will be awarded to the Community Action Partnership of Mercer County’s Lots to Love project.

“The Lots to Love program is an innovative three-pronged approach to bettering communities by tapping into partnership and neighborhood pride,” said Sec. Davin. “The investment we are making today in the rehabilitation of blighted areas will improve the lives of Sharon residents for both this generation and the next.”

Announced by Governor Tom Wolf last month, the project will focus on rehabilitating blighted areas using three action strategies: prioritizing homeowners adjacent to vacant lots for acquisition, encouraging individuals and organizations to adopt vacant lots, and encouraging individuals and organizations to sponsor the rehabilitation of vacant lots. Private funding for the project was provided by First National Bank and UPMC Health Plan.

“CAPMC is thankful for the contributions of First National Bank and UPMC Health Plan for the Lots to Love Project through DCED’s Neighborhood Assistance Program. We are excited to work with the city of Sharon to repurpose these lots to preserve the neighborhoods and reduce the blight that could occur when a lot is unattended,” said Wilma Torres, CEO of Community Action Partnership of Mercer County. “We hope this will generate interest from other community partners and the public to volunteer and either adopt or sponsor a lot and that some of them will become communal places where neighbors can congregate and enjoy life.”

NAP encourages private sector investment into projects that will help improve distressed communities by providing tax credits to businesses that donate capital to support projects that address neighborhood and community problems. NAP can be used for projects in categories including affordable housing, community service, crime prevention, education, job training, charitable food, blight, special population issues, veterans’ initiatives, and long-term revitalization.

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

MEDIA CONTACTS:
J.J. Abbott, Governor’s Office, 717.783.1116
Casey Smith, DCED, 717.783.1132

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