Merkley: Revitalization of Downtown Salem Vital to Success of Local Businesses

Merkley: Revitalization of Downtown Salem Vital to Success of Local Businesses


Portland, OR
– Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley today praised the City of Salem’s Downtown Revitalization “Toolbox” Program and highlighted $150,000 in funding for the project that is currently moving through the U.S. Senate.  The “Toolbox” program provides local business owners with revitalization incentives, encourages future development in downtown Salem and helps reduce building vacancies.

“When you walk down a town’s Main Street, you can get a visual sense of whether it’s thriving or not, and vibrant business districts are always going to create more jobs and more opportunities,” said Merkley.  “The Toolbox program will help business owners revitalize their businesses inside and out, improving not only their own businesses but the entire community.  I’m going to continue doing everything I can to make sure this bill passes the Senate so that Salem businesses have every opportunity to thrive.”

"The City of Salem is committed to continuing the revitalization of our downtown core,” said Salem Mayor Janet Taylor.  “I greatly appreciate the efforts and hard work of Senator Merkley in securing $150,000 for our toolbox which assists downtown property and business owners in making improvements to commercial and mixed-use buildings.”

Since 2003, the “Toolbox” program has helped to reduce building vacancies and improve the economic viability of the area.  The funding for the Downtown Revitalization “Toolbox” Program will help continue providing revitalization incentives for businesses in downtown Salem.  The incentives include interior and exterior matching grant funds, below market rate commercial loans, and special housing opportunity funds to encourage development of all types of housing.   

The Financial Services Appropriations bill must still pass the full Senate, be merged with a companion bill from the House, and be signed by the President before it becomes law and the funds become available.