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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests to Boost Workforce Training Opportunities in Baltimore, Maryland Opportunity Zone

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is investing $1.6 million in City Life Community Builders of Baltimore, Maryland, to support the reuse of the Hoen Lithograph Complex as a workforce training center. The project, to be located in a Tax Cuts and Jobs Act designated Opportunity Zone, will be matched with $1.1 million in local funds and is expected to create more than 100 jobs and spur more than $43 million in private investment.

“The Trump Administration is committed to helping underserved communities grow through strategic investment and innovative workforce development,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “The redevelopment of Baltimore’s Hoen Lithograph Complex in a newly created Opportunity Zone will result in targeted training opportunities for Baltimore’s workers and attract additional investment through special tax incentives. Many Baltimore residents need training in order to achieve high paying jobs.”

“Our administration pledged to utilize new and existing state and federal programs, grants, and funding sources to usher in a new era of revitalization and economic growth in Maryland,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “Today’s federal grant provides much-needed investment in distressed and underserved communities, which give these communities and the citizens who live there greater opportunities and more hope for a better future.”

“Team Maryland continues to bring resources to Baltimore City for projects that will support development, job creation and our local neighborhoods,” said Senator Ben Cardin, Ranking Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee. “Jobs and economic growth do not just happen; they require a commitment of resources in the right projects. The Opportunity Zone program holds great promise to drive investment in some of Baltimore’s toughest neighborhoods and I am pleased to see it work for the Hoen Lithograph Building.”

“This project is a win-win – not only will it revitalize a historic Baltimore landmark, but the end product will create jobs and provide valuable services to our community,” said Senator Van Hollen. “The real dollars leveraged by this award showcase the importance of the Economic Development Administration – which is why I’ve consistently fought to support its efforts and its funding. I will continue working in Congress to provide our communities with the resources they need to thrive and to grow economic opportunity for all.”

“The Hoen Lithograph Building will help us change the future of our beloved City and create opportunities that will positively impact generations yet unborn,” said Congressman Elijah E. Cummings. “The project is an excellent example of how Federal, State, and local resources can be leveraged together to create economic development and support our neighborhoods. The Opportunity Zone program shows great potential to help lift our poorest residents out of poverty and into the middle class. I will continue to work with Team Maryland to bring resources to Baltimore City that will help lift our communities.”

The project will establish adequate storm water management, sewer service and auxiliary infrastructure to support the reuse of the Hoen Lithograph Complex. The improved facility will house construction apprenticeship and business training programs to support higher-education opportunities in the fields of architecture, engineering, marketing, technology and construction.

The funding announced today goes to a Tax Cuts and Jobs Act designated Opportunity Zone, which provides special incentives for further private sector participation and development. Created by President Donald J. Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Opportunity Zone designations spur economic development by giving tax incentives to investors in economically-distressed communities nationwide. To learn more about the Opportunity Zone program, see the Treasury Department resources page here. To learn more about the Department’s work in Opportunity Zones, read our blog post.

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.

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