Governor Wolf Touts Restore Pennsylvania Benefits in Blair, Clearfield Counties

Governor Tom Wolf was joined by local leaders on a walking tour of Altoona to observe blighted business fronts, including the condemned Penn Central Place, to discuss how Restore Pennsylvania could assist with revitalizing Pennsylvania’s communities.

“My vision for Pennsylvania includes vibrant towns and cities with new development, opportunities in rural and disadvantaged areas, and a modern, interconnected commonwealth,” said Governor Wolf. “Restore Pennsylvania is the only way to properly invest in the people, and the future, of Pennsylvania.”

Restore Pennsylvania, funded by the monetization of a commonsense severance tax, will invest $4.5 billion over the next four years in significant high-impact projects throughout the commonwealth to help catapult Pennsylvania ahead of every state in the country in terms of technology, development, and infrastructure.

The infrastructure plan will help communities address blight, expand broadband access, mitigate the effects of localized flooding, and expand green infrastructure.

“Like many municipalities in Pennsylvania, the city of Altoona is doing what we can with the current resources available to us, but lack of funding has prevented us from truly addressing our infrastructure needs,” said Altoona Mayor Matt Pacifico. “We are thankful that the governor is working on a solution, like Restore Pennsylvania, to truly help us address our needs instead of placing the financial responsibilities solely on our residents.”

Encompassing new and expanded programs to address five priority infrastructure areas including high-speed internet access, storm preparedness and disaster recovery, downstream manufacturing, business development, and energy infrastructure, demolition, revitalization, and renewal, and transportation capital projects, Restore Pennsylvania projects will be driven by local input about community needs. Projects identified by local stakeholders will be evaluated through a competitive process to ensure that high-priority, high-impact projects are funded and needs across Pennsylvania are met.

“Establishing new sources of funding for critical economic development projects remains a priority for all organizations like Altoona-Blair County Development (ABDC) Corporation,” said Steve McKnight, President & CEO, ABCD Corporation. We are open to all ideas to make that happen and appreciate being a part of this ongoing discussion”

“Our children need access to affordable high-speed internet to build a better life for themselves, stay in Clearfield County, and compete with people around the world,” said Superintendent Terry Struble. “In today’s global economy, broadband is essential to accessing information, building a business, and achieving a quality of life these young people expect. It’s not a privilege; broadband offers the opportunities that our students deserve.”

Nearly one million Pennsylvanians, many in rural areas, lack access to robust, reliable, high-speed internet.