Save It! Start It! Build It! How to Access American Rescue Plan Funds for Historic Preservation & Economic Development

The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) offers a historic opportunity for counties and local municipalities to invest in local projects, programs and organizations. This webinar will explain why and how you can find funding for historic preservation and economic redevelopment projects in your community.

Wednesday, April 20, 12noon


Meet Your Presenter

Wearing a blue shirt and blue blazer, a bearded man smiles at the camera
Silas Chamberlin, PhD is the Vice President of Economic & Community Development for the York County Economic Alliance.

Silas Chamberlin, PhD, will provide an overview of ARPA, funding allocations, what type of projects are eligible and how to access funding.

He is vice president of economic and community development at the York County Economic Alliance, a position in which he serves as executive director of the Redevelopment Authority of the County of York overseeing a variety of economic financing, business attraction, entrepreneurship, and workforce development initiatives. On behalf of the York County Commissioners, Silas leads the YoCo Strong Recovery Task Force, which has advised the county on the allocation of $132 million in federal recovery funds and the YoCo Fiber Broadband Task Force, which is advancing a $27 million investment in countywide broadband.

Silas previously served as CEO of Downtown Inc, executive director of the Schuylkill River National Heritage Area, and as a regional advisor with the PA Department of Conservation & Natural Resources. He is currently an adjunct professor of economics and urban revitalization at York College and serves on the board of the PA Downtown Center. Silas holds a PhD in environmental history from Lehigh University and a certificate in commercial real estate development from Cornell University. He is the author of On the Trail: A History of American Hiking, published by Yale University Press in 2016.


Meet the Panel

To spark your imagination about putting Rescue Plan funds to work, we’ll also hear from Larry Newman, Executive Director of the Diamond City Partnership (Wilkes-Barre) about efforts to access funding at the county and municipal levels. Emily Fetcko from the Erie Downtown Partnership and Melinda Meyer, ARPA administrator for Erie County and a member of the City of Erie Historic Review Commission will discuss plans for using ARPA funds in Erie to advance the historic preservation mission.



This webinar is co-hosted by the Pennsylvania Downtown Center and Preservation Pennsylvania
Zoom Webinar feature sponsored by Margaret and Bob Wallis


About the Pennsylvania Downtown Center

Pennsylvania Downtown Center (PDC) is the only statewide nonprofit dedicated solely to the revitalization of the commonwealth’s core communities.

Primarily through utilization of the National Main Street Center®, PDC provides outreach, technical assistance, and educational services in order to assist communities in revitalizing their central business districts and surrounding residential neighborhoods. Over the years, we have formed a variety of strategic partnerships with local and statewide organizations in order to further our mission of promoting community revitalization and reinvestment. Additionally, our centralized Harrisburg location allows us to interact regularly with members of the PA Legislature in order to advocate on behalf of downtown and neighborhood initiatives in the commonwealth.

As a Main Street America Coordinating Program, the Pennsylvania Downtown Center is part of a powerful, grassroots network consisting of 45 Coordinating Programs and over 1600 neighborhoods and communities across the country committed to creating high-quality places and to building stronger communities through preservation-based economic development.


About Preservation Pennsylvania

Preservation Pennsylvania is the Commonwealth’s only private statewide nonprofit organization dedicated to helping people protect and preserve the historic places that matter to them.

Celebrating our 40th Anniversary in 2022, Preservation Pennsylvania was established by the Commonwealth’s General Assembly in 1982 as the Preservation Fund of Pennsylvania, a statewide revolving fund to assist in the acquisition and rehabilitation of historic properties. Since then, Preservation Pennsylvania has grown into its role as a private, nonprofit membership organization with a statewide mission to protect and preserve Pennsylvania’s irreplaceable historic places.

We assist individuals, organizations, corporations, and governmental agencies from across the Commonwealth (and sometimes the nation) in their own preservation-related efforts, through a dynamic scope of activities and services. Whether as a leader, partner, or advisor, Preservation Pennsylvania works to secure the future of the past through educational outreach workshops and events, legislative advocacy, advisory and technical assistance in the field, and other special initiatives.