WASHINGTON, DC – Two federal grants have been awarded for projects and initiatives in the Village of Somerset: one from the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), and another from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Perry County is located in Ohio’s 15th Congressional District, represented by Congressman Steve Stivers (R-OH).

Somerset has been awarded a $500,000 grant from ARC to construct an access road to the newly established Genesis Perry County Medical Center, providing a direct road from SR 13 to the health center. The funds will be used for construction of a two lane road with concrete curbs, gutters, and a sidewalk leading to the facility.

“Not only will this road make the medical center more accessible to patients, it will support an additional 66 new jobs in the facility,” Stivers said. “I was proud to work with the local officials in Perry County to secure this grant and help the medical center more easily serve the community and region.”

“Congressman Stivers’ staff took a lead role in helping the Village of Somerset and Genesis Health System apply for an obtain these critical funds to build an access road to the new medical center directly from SR 13,” Somerset Mayor Tom Johnson said.

Somerset also received a $75,000 grant from the NEA to support The Winding Road. An initiative of Ohio’s Hill Country Heritage Area based in Shawnee. The Winding Road is dedicated to developing tourism and increasing economic opportunities by telling the story of Ohio Appalachia through art, food, music, outdoor recreation, environmental learning and guiding.

The community will use the grant to establish business development programs for creative industry entrepreneurs, artist-designed signage for local businesses, and public art and performance programs to highlight the existing creative community. Somerset will partner with organizations and groups such as Hocking College, the Ohio Arts Council, the American Sign Museum, Ohio University LIGHTS, Columbus College of Art and Design, Appalachian Hills of Ohio Territory, and the Columbus Symphony Orchestra.

“The Winding Road does incredible work to highlight our community’s unique stories and create economic opportunity,” Stivers said. “This is just the beginning for the initiative, and I look forward to being a resource for them as they continue to grow.”

“Ohio’s Appalachian Winding Road initiative is a great group of people working together to highlight our region’s amazing natural beauty and outdoor recreation opportunities, as well as the rich artistic and cultural heritage that sustains these rural communities,” Mayor Johnson said. “We are proud of the state and federal recognition that this collaborative effort is receiving.”

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