Mark Johnson

Mark Johnson

COLUMBUS — A new program is available to businesses to help development projects and job creation.

The Vibrant Community Program assists distressed small and medium-sized communities with the implementation of those projects.

“This program provides businesses, developers, local governments and others an opportunity for economic growth and development,” State Representative Mark Johnson (R-92) said. “Thank you, JobsOhio, for supporting Ohio’s local businesses and investing in our communities. I encourage all eligible people, businesses and organizations to apply.”

To fit the criteria, cities must have a population between 5,000 and 75,000 and poverty rates that are at or above the state’s average rate. Businesses, nonprofits, developers, port authorities and local governments are all eligible entities for the program. Nearly 100 cities statewide have qualified for the program, including Circleville and surrounding communities like Chillicothe, Washington Court House, Logan and Lancaster.

JobsOhio has stated that mixed-use projects are permitted, but the strongest applicants will have a higher percentage of space used for job creation and retention. Eligible projects generally fall into two categories: real estate development or operated shared spaces.

In total, the program grants offer up to $2 million for these development projects.

For a full list of guiding principles and project evaluation criteria, please visit https://www.jobsohio.com/vibrant-community-program/. Circleville entities interested in applying for the program should contact the JobsOhio regional partner, One Columbus. Kenny McDonald, president and CEO of One Columbus can be contacted at km@columbusregion.com or 614-225-6060.

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