Officials at USDA have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Appalachian Regional Commission, intended to create a stronger and more diversified Appalachian economy and create jobs through strategic Federal, state and local collaboration. In making the announcement, Deputy Ag Secretary Kathleen Merrigan says they are reaffirming our commitment to improving the economic opportunity and quality of life for everyone.
USDA has been working over the last 10 months with ARC to conduct a series of listening sessions to seek input from local stakeholders. One of the primary outcomes of the comments received was that citizens were concerned about the shortage of regional economic development strategies and the lack of coordination by Federal, State, and local agencies to address challenges.
Other Federal signers include the departments of Housing and Urban Development, Commerce, Education, Health and Human Services, Transportation, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Small Business Administration.