WEST CHESTER − April 14, 2021 – Organizations supporting two of Chester County’s historic downtown and commercial districts will receive more than $60,000 in total state COVID-19 relief. 

Under Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 Relief – Supporting Elm and Main (SEAM) Program, the West Chester Business Improvement District (BID) will receive $12,381 in grant funding and Oxford Mainstreet will receive $50,000 in grant funding.

As a former mayor, state Senator Carolyn Comitta said she fully understands the importance of supporting the local business community and the economic vitality of downtown business districts and main street organizations. 

“The pandemic continues to have a significant impact on our local businesses, downtown business districts, and the organizations dedicated to their success and growth,” Comitta said. “As we begin our economic recovery, business districts and main street organizations will continue to play a key role in West Chester, Oxford, and towns across Chester County and Pennsylvania.”

The West Chester BID and Oxford Mainstreet grants come as part of nearly $2 million in funding approved for 43 projects statewide through SEAM.

The program assists community revitalization organizations dedicated to community and economic development in older and historic downtowns, commercial districts, and neighborhoods that have been economically impacted by COVID-19.

Administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development and supported by the Keystone Communities funding, SEAM provides financial assistance according to the principles of the Elm Street and Main Street approaches.

“Over the past year, communities across the commonwealth have faced devastating impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic, during which Pennsylvania’s network of community development organizations never ceased answering the call for help,” said Governor Tom Wolf. “Our Elm Street and Main Street programs work tirelessly year in and year out—even in the best of times—to improve their communities, and this funding will provide them with the support they need to overcome the challenges they’ve recently faced.”

Eligible applicants for the program included designated Keystone Main Street, Keystone Elm Street, or Keystone Communities organizations, 2020 Nationally Accredited Main Street programs, and community development organizations. Applicants were required to employ, and continue to employ for at least the next year, a paid professional manager or coordinator responsible for the administration of the revitalization strategy/program.