Appalachian Power provides funding for local economic development organizations in response to COVID-19

CHARLESTON, WV (WOAY) – Appalachian Power today announced it is donating $50,000 to local and regional economic development organizations across its three-state service area to assist with expenses during the pandemic.

Appalachian Power has a long history of providing support for local, regional and state economic development efforts. “This funding is another step in helping our economic development partners and communities adapt to the changes brought about by the coronavirus,” said John Smolak, Appalachian Power business and economic development director.

The funds will primarily help organizations with expenses tied to updating their computer systems, software and technology to accommodate virtual meetings, online research, and digital marketing.

“The field of economic development has had to change its business model to accommodate the virus,” Smolak said. “Our partners are experiencing additional expenses as they adjust to a new way of doing business. Providing funding demonstrates the value we place on the work they are doing to promote business recruitment and retention.”

Wheeling’s Regional Economic Development (RED) Partnership commended the company for its support and collaboration with communities. “This is a very generous and creative offer put forth by our economic development partner at AEP,” said Josh Jefferson, project coordinator. “RED, like all economic development organizations, has needed to make technology upgrades to continue our services to support the communities we serve during a very turbulent time.”

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