CROWNSVILLE, Md. – The Hogan administration announced today that 114 matching grants totaling $5.1 million were awarded to Maryland nonprofits, local jurisdictions, and other heritage tourism organizations by the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority (MHAA). These FY21 funds support heritage tourism projects and activities that draw visitors and expand economic development and tourism-related job creation throughout Maryland.
Organizations receiving awards include museums, parks, educational organizations, and other entities that steward and celebrate the unique cultural and natural resources located within Maryland’s Heritage Areas.
“As Chair of the MHAA, I have seen first-hand how these grants have helped areas thrive and increase their visibility for people to enjoy,” said Planning Secretary Rob McCord. “There are so many places in Maryland that have a great story to tell and this funding helps these stories be brought to light for Marylanders and others to visit.”
MHAA oversees Maryland’s 13 locally-administered, state-certified Heritage Areas. Every county in Maryland and Baltimore City includes at least part of a state-Certified area within their boundaries. Heritage Areas foster broad public-private partnerships to preserve and enhance the best of Maryland’s historic sites and towns, unspoiled natural landscapes, and enduring traditions. These tangible links to both place and the past encourage residents to recognize they have a special piece of the American story to treasure and share with others, and that in doing so they contribute to the economic well-being of Maryland’s communities.
Maryland’s Heritage Areas contribute to the state’s economy by saving and enhancing the places that attract tourists who focus their travels on historic sites, museums, cultural activities, or the natural beauty of Maryland’s Atlantic and Chesapeake Bay coastal areas and unspoiled scenery of mountain Maryland. Every dollar of MHAA funding has a return on investment of $4.45. MHAA grants generate $19.8 million in state and local taxes and create 3,146 jobs annually.
MHAA is an independent unit in the Executive Branch of government administered by the Maryland Department of Planning. Since its creation in 1996, it has awarded more than $46 million in grants and helped to leverage more than $1.62 billion in non-state funding for heritage tourism projects and activities in Maryland’s 13 Certified Heritage Areas.
A full list of the 114 grantees can be found here – mht.maryland.gov/documents/PDF/MHAA/MHAA_CurrentGrantAwards.pdf
To learn more about the Maryland Heritage Areas Program and the state’s Certified Heritage Areas, please visit mht.maryland.gov/heritageareas.shtml