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Congressional Earmarks Secure Millions For Two State Health Programs

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The state stands to benefit from another $10 million in federal funding to support community health initiatives.

Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito announced $5 million Monday for the New River Health Association in Fayette County.

The money will go towards combining and expanding New River’s services in one large medical complex in the former Oak Hill Kmart.

“The facility will house primary medical and dental services, behavioral health services, substance abuse treatment services, pulmonary rehabilitation services, chiropractic services, and a pharmacy with a drive through window,” said New River Health Association CEO John Schultz.

“The creation of a conference center is also part of the project. We believe that a state of the art conference center located near the New River Gorge National Park will be a natural draw for national, regional, state and local conferences.”

On Friday the senators also announced close to $5 million for the Marshall University Center Of Excellence For Recovery to support its efforts to help West Virginians suffering from substance use disorder or behavioral health issues.

““The Marshall University Center of Excellence for Recovery is on the frontlines of the fight against the devastating drug epidemic that continues to ravage our state,” Manchin said. “The funding announced today will support Marshall University’s work to address mental and behavioral health needs in rural and underserved areas across the state.”

Both projects are funded through Congressionally Directed Spending requests, better known as earmarks, that allow state and local governments, non-profits, and other public entities to apply for targeted funding for projects.

North Central/Morgantown Reporter, cschulz@wvpublic.org, 304-284-1497, @SchulzReports

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