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Rural PA Mayor Puts Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Funds to Work
Pennsylvania Ag Connection - 06/02/2023

A small Pennsylvania community is hoping Congress will remember the needs of rural areas as lawmakers negotiate the final, contentious debt ceiling deal.

Jamie Kinder, mayor of Meadville, said larger cities tend to get more attention and funding from federal and state governments, and small rural areas like hers are more likely to be left out. She added her town has benefited from Bipartisan Infrastructure Act dollars, which have funded projects and programs in the community.

Kinder contends federal funding for small, rural areas must continue.

"We have used that federal money; we bought a fire truck," Kinder pointed out. "That's what helped us be able to bring the EMS service into Meadville. We don't have a lot of money, we have no way of bringing in revenue for a city, right? They tie your hands at the state level. So, the only way you get money in a city is through property tax."

As part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, Pennsylvania is expected to receive about $13.2 billion over five years in federal funding for highways and bridges. In Meadville, road resurfacing on one major street is part of more than $12.5 million in state work scheduled this year by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

Kinder emphasized Meadville relies on funding from the federal government, noting her town's economic needs are just as great as those in larger cities and suburban areas.


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