Officials say an initiative to improve the economy in southeastern Kentucky has seen successes during its first year.
A statement says the Kentucky Promise Zone has attracted more than $109 million in funding, with investments being made in education, medical facilities, higher education, workforce training and anti-drug initiatives.
The Appalachian Regional Commission awarded a $250,000 grant last year to launch the Promise Zone program in eight counties in southeastern Kentucky: Bell, Harlan, Letcher, Perry, Leslie, Clay, Knox and Whitley. The funding came after President Barack Obama announced that the region was one of five that would be targeted for tax incentives and federal grants under a government "Promise Zone" program.
Under the program, the federal government partnered with communities to create jobs, improve the economy and expand educational opportunities.