|ARC map shows most economically distressed counties in red. Click on it to enlarge.|
The legislation, introduced Sept. 18 in the House and Senate, would also increase funding to the poorest counties served by the ARC's Area Development Program. Of the 82 counties the ARC classifies as economically distressed, 35, or 43 percent, are in Kentucky.
McConnell and Rogers say other regional commissions modeled after ARC are headquartered on home ground, and that such a move would reduce administrative costs and make them more accountable to their communities. The lawmakers say the location for the headquarters would be chosen after the bill becomes law.
President Trump’s proposed budget targeted ARC for elimination, "but lawmakers from both parties pledge it will remain intact," Daly reports. McConnell said he supports ARC, but wants to improve it and make it more efficient.