MARTINSVILLE, Va. (WFXR) — On Thursday afternoon, U.S. Sens. Mark Warner and Tim Kaine (both D-Va.) announced a total of $2,140,321 in federal funding for the A.L. Philpott Manufacturing Extension Program (MEP) — also known as GENEDGE Alliance — in Martinsville.

These funds — which come from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) — will improve GENEDGE’s ability to support small and medium-sized manufacturing companies across the Commonwealth by expanding their reach, growing the manufacturing industry, using high-tech solutions, optimizing their facilities, boosting efficiency, and training and mentoring workers, officials say.

“The pandemic and war in Ukraine have underscored the importance of supporting domestic manufacturing. We’re excited to announce this funding, which will grow Virginia’s manufacturing industry,” the senators said in a statement on Thursday, June 30. “This investment will help ensure small and medium-sized manufacturers have the resources they need.”

According to officials, GENEDGE is a part of the Hollings MEP National Network, which generated $26.20 in new sales growth for manufacturers for every one dollar received in federal funding during Financial Year 2021.