Stranded students rescued by Brown County cooperation 4-H Teen Ambassador Dunning attends SHOT Show Veterans Service Commission invites veterans to seek help with benefits Unemployment rate rises in Brown County Pick a Lollipop, help a dog A season to remember G-Men hit the field for first baseball scrimmage Eastern’s Rigdon, Purdy earn AP SE District Div. III honors New blocking, kicking rules address risk minimization in high school football Judy A Schneider James M Darnell Lawanda R Truesdell Paul E Grisham Arrelous R Rowland Dennis E Stivers David M Daniels Fayetteville man is charged with child porn April 1st Grand Opening for Jacob’s Ladder Resale Boutique in Georgetown Talent Show auditions at Gaslight Theatre Nine indicted by county grand jury Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial Wall visit coming next May to BC Fairgrounds In it to win it! Bronco wrestlers end season on successful note Eastern’s Hopkins finishes 5th in long jump at OATCCC State Indoor Track and Field Meet SBAAC awards academic all-stars, winning teams Marvin D Atkin Beverly S Flatt Jessie M Sanders Leroy Deck Sr Jody A Towler Sherman E Young Kenneth C Burton Varnau’s face second defamation suit Attorney General to visit Georgetown schools Clermont County GOP hosts Wenstrup, DeWine at dinner Fatal car crash in Adams County BC Chamber welcomes new Cricket Wireless store to Mt. Orab Aberdeen Council approves 2017 budget Royce K Zimmerman Lady Warriors advance to Elite 8 SBAAC awards boys basketball all-stars SBAAC girls basketball all-stars take home awards SHAC Winter Sports Awards Banquet set for March 12 Altman claims 170-pound district title Sirkka L Buller Arthur C Schneider Lowell G Neal Virginia M Schirmer Connie S Darling Harold L Purdin Terry E Frye Lucille Schumacher Lady Warriors roll to district finals Broncos take care of business to claim sectional crown G-Men upset MVCA to earn berth sectional finals WBHS JROTC Rifle Team competes at Camp Perry Lady Rockets finish 12-12 Season reaches end for Rockets Eugene D Ring Two indicted on major drug charges Two charged with home invasion Cincinnati airport expanding services, lowering prices in effort to compete Two sentenced in common pleas court Georgetown man hurt in car crash Robert G Miller Linda M Howland Robert E McKinney Mildred J Hodges Farrel L Amiott Patricia Brown Rick L Dye Mary E Nagel Betty Ratliff Broncos claim SBAAC wrestling title Broncos pull ahead for win over G-Men in SBAAC Tourney Ripley boys wrap up regular season with win at Lynchburg Eastern girls are sectional champs Anderson pleads not guilty to battery charge Some county offices to change locations Fayetteville prepares for Traveling Vietnam Memorial Wall HealthSource hosts Chamber of Commerce meeting Five sentenced in Brown County Common Pleas Court June Howser Marguerite A Fender Timothy D Harris Jay R Purdy Robin S Godwin Marc A Wachter Chester W Eyre Warriors blast past the G-Men, 61-40 Rockets performing well heading into post-season tournament play Lady Warriors bring home the Gold with perfect 13-0 finish in SHAC Western Brown Junior High wrestling team wraps up successful season Rockets fall victim to ‘Pack’ attack Broncos suffer heartbreaking loss to Mentor Lake Catholic in state quarterfinals Adult Education Center coming to county ‘Senior Playground’ moving forward at Georgetown park Brown County 4-H kicks off another year Eastern Middle School celebrates “Kindness Week” Billie L Shoemaker

Governor’s office visits area

Ohio Governor’s Office of Appalachia Director Jason Wilson, center, stands in front of the Gaslight Theater during his tour of Brown County with, from left, Brian Elliott, president of the Brown County Chamber of Commerce, Dannielle Williams, office manager at the chamber, John Hemmings, executive director of the Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission and Jessica Purdon, economic development specialist of the OVRDC.

Jason Wilson, director of the Ohio Governor’s Office of Appalachia, tours the Gaslight Theater during his visit to Georgetown.

Brown County was paid a visit on July 9 and 10 by Jason Wilson, director of the Ohio Governor’s Office of Appalachia.

Wilson toured Georgetown, Ripley and Mt. Orab in his trip to the region, which also included stopping by historical sites and visiting former and potential future project sites for economic development programs, which his office helps fund through grants.

It was Wilson’s first visit to Brown County since he was appointed as the director by Ohio Gov. John R. Kasich in November 2011. The GOA covers 32 Ohio counties from as far west as Clermont County to as far northeast as Ashtabula County.

“We’re spending two days visiting the communities (in Brown County) to see what assets are out there that we’ve invested in in the past and how they’re being used, and also look at opportunities for the future as to what we can invest in,” Wilson said. “It helps me get my hands on what’s happening in these counties, Brown and Clermont.”

On Thursday, July 9, Wilson toured the U.S. Grant boyhood home and schoolhouse in Georgetown before swinging over to the Gaslight Theater, where he met Brian Elliott and Dannielle Williams, the Brown County Chamber of Commerce president and office manager, respectively.

Wilson said that while sewer, water, road and bridge projects may be more noticeable and necessary, a project restoring or building a theater for a community has more intangible benefits.

“When you talk about a theater and how does that affect our community, whether it’s arts and recreation or visitors, (the question for us is) what brings people to the area? How can we work to build capacity?

“The overall goal for the state is how do we improve the lives of Appalachian Ohioans, and we do that through these strategic investments,” Wilson said.

Wilson was joined on his tour of Brown County by Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission Executive Director John Hemmings and OVRDC Economic Development Specialist Jessica Purdon.

The OVRDC is one of four agencies that works with the GOA to distribute grant funding to municipalities, businesses or counties for projects. The OVRDC works with Adams, Brown, Clermont, Fayette, Gallia, Highland, Jackson, Lawrence, Pike, Ross, Scioto and Vinton counties.

“Ohio is the only state of the 13 national Appalachian states that has state funding,” Wilson said. “We have about $3.5 million in state funding and then we put about $3.5 million in federal funding, knock on wood, we’ve been able to have stable funding which allows us with confidence to go out and look at projects and opportunities, and how to invest in our Appalachian region.”

Wilson said he’d like to hear feedback from the local communities and counties about what projects they’re pursuing and then working from there to see how the GOA and other agencies can facilitate those projects, as opposed to Wilson’s office requiring the projects to have to meet certain specific guidelines that could scupper some small-town opportunities.

“What I like to think is that I don’t come down here to tell people what to do. What I do is I come down and visit and ask people, ‘What are their priorities?’, or ‘What is most important to the people of Brown County’,” Wilson said.

The process to receive funding in Brown County is as follows: An organization or municipality will submit a project to the OVRDC caucus. The caucus will then discuss the project and eventually rate the their top three selections.

Then, the OVRDC will take those top three and take them to Columbus, where they’ll meet with the GOA staff, and then they’ll all discuss the best way to fund the projects and how much funding to provide.

“We’ll be having that priority meeting to say to John (Hemmings) and his team, ‘What is the highest priority in your region, and how can we fund that properly?’,” Wilson said.

“A government shouldn’t tell people what they need to do. What they need to do is be responsive to what the community wants to do,” Wilson said. “Our challenge is to make sure that we’re using that money wisely and making the best impact that we can.”

Following Wilson’s stop in Georgetown, he toured Ripley and visited the John Rankin home, before visiting Mt. Orab on Friday, July 10.

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