Recently Northwest Savings Bank presented a $10,000 check to the Elk County Community Foundation. First Commonwealth Bank, Snyder Trucking and Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield gave an additional $13,650 combined. These funds will be included in the Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program (EITC) which then will make grants available to area public schools to support innovative educational programs that do not fall within the typical academic program.
The funds for these innovative programs are administered and distributed through the foundation, which has been designated to serve as an Educational Improvement Organization by the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. In 2008, through the Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program and the Elk County Community Foundation, St. Marys, Johnsonburg and Ridgway Area School Districts were able to apply for grants for programming.
Ridgway Area School District purchased a Smartboard, computer and projector for a classroom along with training for the teachers. Johnsonburg School District will be sending Educators to the workplace this summer. Educators will be working with and in local businesses to help enhance their curriculum so students become more aware of what knowledge they need to enter the workforce in our community. Finally St. Marys School District purchased 10 projectors for the Middle school classrooms for the use of integrating technology, particularly the digital videos from Discover United Streaming.
Any entity authorized to conduct business in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and subject to certain taxes is eligible to apply to be involved with the EITC program. Tax credits are limited to 75 percent of the business’ contribution with a maximum of $100,000 annually. If a business agrees to make the same contribution for two consecutive years, it may receive a tax credit equal to 90 percent of its contribution.
Interested participants must submit a brief application to the DCED. The application can be found at www.inventpa.com. The foundation also has applications and further information available to assist with the business application process.