RALEIGH, N.C. (WGHP) – Five governments in the Triad are among 14 dividing nearly $3 million in the most recent set of grants approved by the North Carolina Rural Infrastructure Authority that are designed to bring jobs and private investment to the state.

Gov. Roy Cooper approved these payments to invest in the reuse and redevelopment of structures across the Triad. More than $42 million in grants were reported earlier.

Richard Childress (right), owner of Richard Childress Racing talks to driver Kevin Harvick. Childress also owns a winery in Lexington that is expanding. (Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)

A release from the governor’s office says these most recent distributions will create 494 jobs, 128 of which had been announced earlier, and more than $295 million in private investment.

“When we use these infrastructure grants to help rural North Carolina thrive, we improve our whole state’s economic competitiveness,” Cooper said in the release. “We are strengthening local communities by making strategic investments in facilities and sites that will host good jobs.”

One of those grants came up earlier this week when representatives of the Department of Commerce’s Economic Investment Committee approved investments to help Alamance Foods expand its operation in Graham.

This grant is $500,000 through the city of Burlington to improve a 220,000-square-foot building the company would use for manufacturing and cold storage.

Three other grants in the Triad also would be used to improve existing buildings:

  • The city of Lexington will get $130,000 to expand the building occupied by Childress Winery, which is owned by NASCAR icon Richard Childress. The company plans to add 26,000 square feet to its fermentation building, which will generate more than $5 million in private investment and create 20 jobs.
  • The city of Thomasville will receive $155,000 to help A.M. Haire Manufacturing and Service, which designs, manufactures and markets truck bodies for the freight industry, add 40,308 square feet to its existing facility. The project is expected to generate more than $1.63 million in private investment and to create 31 jobs.
  • Randolph County will receive $100,000 to help Mid-State Trailers add 26,000 square feet in Denton. The company, which manufactures a broad range of gooseneck, equipment hauling, deckover and utility trailers, will invest $427,829 and create 19 jobs.

The Building Reuse Program provides grants to local governments to renovate and/or expand vacant buildings occupied by companies doing business in North Carolina.

Under that program, the city of Asheboro will receive $25,000 in the Vacant Building Reuse program for a 1,400-square-foot facility to be inhabited by UpStyled Goods, a new retail company that produces upcycled goods from scrap fabric, plans to occupy this facility. The company is expected to invest $260,076 and create five jobs.

NC Commerce Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders said these programs have invested more than $87 million this year.

“These grants play a key role in creating jobs and attracting investment,” she said in the release, “and we are pleased to be able to partner with local governments to support their economic growth.”