Greene, Washington counties receive $2.5 million in redevelopment grants

Paul Pateera

Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) grants totaling $2.5 million were awarded to economic endeavors in parts of Greene and Washington counties.

The funding will benefit industrial revitalization and economic development, tourism and drug treatment.

“This grant funding will help to increase local employment levels and tax revenues – two initiatives that can greatly benefit the 46th District,” said state Sen. Camera Bartolotta, R-Carroll Township. “The funding is truly an investment in the future of Southwestern Pennsylvania.”

The 46th District includes all of Greene County and parts of Washington and Beaver counties.

RACP is a Commonwealth grant program administered by the Office of the Budget for the acquisition and construction of regional economic, cultural, civic, recreational and historical improvement projects. RACP projects are state-funded and cannot obtain primary funding under other state programs.

Atlas Metal Conversion in Eighty Four was awarded $500,000 for a revitalization project that will include refurbishing and upgrading milling machines. This also will allow for the procurement of several other pieces of machinery, as well as repaving, utility upgrades and other infrastructure improvements.

“It’s going to be used on upgrading existing equipment,” said Richard Reed, chairman of Atlas Metal Conversion. “Our match will be purchasing two new CNC mills so we can expand our customer base.”

Reed said the goal is to increase to 24 employees at the facility. At the time of the application, the number of employees was 12.

“It’s huge for us,” Reed said of the grant. “This will allow us to upgrade our facility to provide a wider variety of services to our customer base.”

Atlas Metal Conversion is a processor and conditioner of high-grade alloy steels and titanium products used in aerospace, defense, power generation and structural applications.

Penn Highlands Mon Valley Hospital in Monongahela was awarded $500,000 for a detoxification unit. The project involves the renovation of approximately 9,100 square feet of existing in-patient space on the seventh floor to convert it into a secure 14-bed inpatient detoxification unit.

“The renovation will consist of turning the previous med-surge rooms into the inpatient detox rooms,” said Andrew Bilinsky, communications coordinator of Penn Highlands Healthcare.

Bilinsky said there are many regulations to which the facility must adhere as the process unfolds to develop the detox unit.

“We have yet to begin renovating the space and have no definitive timetable for the project,” he said.

Bartolotta applied for the grant on behalf of the hospital. She said access to a local detox unit is important.

“Detoxification units in hospital settings are needed all over Pennsylvania,” Bartolotta said.”There are overdose issues happening everywhere. It’s going to help out all of our communities and our families who are dealing with substance abuse issues. To be able to improve this in our area is going to put families back together. It’s going to save lives.”

Liberty Pole Spirits in Washington was awarded $500,00 for expansion. This will allow for the purchase of a two-acre parcel for a second site of the company’s operation. This facility will become a whiskey distillery campus consisting of three main structures, 2,400 square foot tasting room, 8,000 square foot production building and 4,000 square foot barrel storage building. It also will create outdoor seating with room for food truck parking.

This second site on Racetrack Road will be a short distance from Hollywood Casino at The Meadows, Street at The Meadows and The Shoppes at Quail Acres.

Jim Hough, who founded Liberty Pole in 2016 with his wife, Ellen, said expansion “is something we’ve been contemplating and planning for a couple of years.

“We’ve outgrown our location,” he added. “This will give us the ability to expand production.”