This news release is from the previous Governor's administration.
For Immediate Release: March 7, 2017
Contacts: Office of the Governor: Brian Coy, 804-225-4260, | Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, Barbara Dodd, (804) 371-7006,

Governor McAuliffe Announces $200,000 Community Development Block Grant Award for the Town of Big Stone Gap

~Mountain Empire Community College to establish new Power Groundman training program creating a new career pathway for high demand, regionally available jobs~


RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced $200,000 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding for the Town of Big Stone Gap.  Since 1982, the federally-funded CDBG program has been administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD).  Virginia receives approximately $17 million annually for the grant program.

“I am pleased to announce this Community Development Block Grant Local Innovation Award for the Town of Big Stone Gap,” said Governor McAuliffe. “These grants are vital tools in our efforts to support critical economic development projects in economically disadvantaged regions. By focusing on increased regional collaboration and attainment of credentials that matter in the workforce, we are continuing to drive the new Virginia economy forward into all corners of the Commonwealth.”

“Through the CDBG program, we are utilizing and leveraging federal resources to continue addressing community issues associated with workforce training, housing, economic development, health and safety,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Todd P. Haymore.  “I congratulate Big Stone Gap and Mountain Empire Community College for creating this program and furthering the Governor’s efforts to create a new Virginia economy, through workforce development and creating career pathways that lead to industry demanded credentials and good paying jobs.”

The CDBG program provides funding to eligible units of local government for planning and implementing projects that address critical community needs, including housing, infrastructure, and economic development. Nearly three hundred non-metropolitan cities, counties, and towns are eligible for this program in Virginia.  Grant awards are made through a competitive process using objective scoring criteria developed in consultation with eligible localities. 

Most CDBG projects, in accordance with federal law, principally benefit low- and moderate-income persons. Other projects are targeted for the prevention or elimination of slum and blighting conditions or in response to community development needs of a particular urgency.

2016 CDBG Local Innovation Award:


Project Name

CDBG Award

Town of Big Stone Gap

Mountain Empire Community College Power Lineman Program