More funds now available for property demolition in West Virginia

CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — A new law in West Virginia will help local communities get rid of abandoned and dilapidated properties.

Senate Bill 722 transfers funds to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection to help cities and counties better address the problem.

In 2021, the legislature created a program to encourage DEP to work with local governments to deal with abandoned and dilapidated properties. Now, in 2022, lawmakers have passed a bill that will transfer $10 million to fund this effort.

“We plan to launch pilot programs with cities and counties as quickly as we can get them in place. We have done questionnaires, phone calls and meetings and continue to develop a list of priorities and hope to get some money by this summer,” said Ed Maguire, environmental advocate with Virginia DEP- Western.

In a completely separate effort, the Kanawha County Commission plans to invest more than $2 million to process a list of more than 140 properties in the county that are slated for demolition.

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