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Press Releases

Contact: Public Affairs Department, (202) 482-4085
Wednesday, September 12, 2012

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $2.8 Million to Build Critical Infrastructure to Support Business Development and Job Growth in Lewis County, Washington

WASHINGTON - Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank today announced a $2.8 million Economic Development Administration (EDA) grant to the Industrial Park at TransAlta and the East Lewis County Public Development Authority of Chehalis, Washington, to provide critical infrastructure needed to develop the Industrial Park at TransAlta. The project is expected to create 300 jobs and generate $120 million in private investment, according to grantee estimates.

"This $2.8 million Economic Development Administration grant in Washington is an example of the Obama administration's commitment to investing in strengthening our nation's critical infrastructure and helping communities recover from natural disasters," said Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank. "The grant announced today will help Washington develop an industrial park to attract manufacturing and other businesses that will create new jobs and promote economic opportunity in the Lewis County region."

Lewis County has suffered from extensive flooding, most recently in 2011, which hinders existing and future businesses and, consequently, long-term economic stability. The Industrial Park at TransAlta, a reclaimed coal mining site, is located at an elevation such that businesses there should not experience flood damage. The site's development will provide economic stability during future flooding events as well as assure long-term economic sustainability for the region's business community.

The project is part of a $200 million appropriation made by Congress to EDA to help communities that received a major disaster designation in fiscal year 2011 with long-term economic recovery and infrastructure support.

Within the context of the administration's National Disaster Recovery Framework (NDRF), EDA serves as the Coordinating Agency on behalf of the Department of Commerce for the Economic Recovery Support Function (RSF) to coordinate the activities of a diverse group of partner agencies supporting recovery in disaster-impacted communities. The activities consist primarily of leveraging existing resources and authorities to make a positive impact for communities affected by disasters.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.