CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The governor’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Highways has scheduled nine public meetings in July and August for state residents to speak out about the future of highway funding.
The commission finalized the meeting dates, times and locations during a Wednesday conference call.
The first is scheduled for Thursday, July 11, at the Holiday Inn in Martinsburg. Meetings will also take place in Logan, Huntington, Wheeling, Parkersburg, Fairmont, Princeton, Beckley and Elkins.
Most all meetings will go from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Blue Ribbon Commission member Jan Vineyard said Wednesday it’s important to spread the word about the meetings. .She said the commission needs lots of input from residents.
“We need to ask groups to help us get attendance at these meetings so they can be productive,” Vineyard said.
The commission has been working on recommendations for the past several months. Members are scheduled to submit a final report to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin in late summer or early fall.
Vineyard says commission members need to let residents know they are approaching future highway funding in the state in three ways.
“The need for additional dollars. The need for savings and the need for new innovation,” she said.
Construction jobs on the state’s highways are now funded by the state Road Fund, which is made up of revenues from the state gasoline tax. The fund has been stagnant for the last few years and fewer federal highway dollars have been earmarked for West Virginia.
The meeting schedule is as follows:
Thurs., July 11, Martinsburg Holiday Inn 4 p.m.-7 p.m.
Tues., July 16, Chief Logan State Park 4 p.m.-7 p.m.
Thurs., July 18, MU Alumni Hall, Huntington, 4 p.m.-7 p.m.
Tues., July 30, Oglebay Resort, Wheeling, 4 p.m.-7 p.m.
Thurs., Aug. 1, Mineral Wells, Comfort Inn 4 p.m.-7 p.m.
Thurs., Aug. 8, Fairmont, Mollohan Research Ctr. 4 p.m.-7 p.m.
Mon., Aug. 12, Princeton Days Inn, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Mon., Aug. 12, Beckley, Mountaineer Conference Center, 4 p.m.-7 p.m.
Thurs., Aug. 15, Elkins Days Inn, 4 p.m.-7 p.m.