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.

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  • Jason

    I have lived In This state all of my life and I have had about all I can stand! Charleston's user fee and all of this other crap is so stupid. How about you quit wasting the money you have? Replacing guard rail that there is clearly nothing wrong with, putting up the exact same road sign in front of the old one,paving I64 when it was a perfectly smooth road, how about state road employees driving in the median picking up trash out the window of truck,painting road lines that absolutely you can not tell any difference in, state employees driving Dodge Durango, Jeep Cherokees etc.. I have seen all of this myself. It's never gonna end until the people of this state start voting on something else then a name they have heard before. Send Danny,Joe,Earl and Nick packing. I truly believe had Robert C. Byrd been on the ballot after he passed away he would have won. I am sick of socialism, people buying pop and candy in gas stations with MY money on a food stamp card. You can take your taxes and wasteful spending and shovem

  • Penny Kelly

    Why is Preston County always the last to get paved roads. They have been patched so many times they feel as though you are riding in a horse and buggy. I guess we have no clout.

  • MrJ

    Kanawha, Putnam, and panhandle counties first dibs, crumbs for everyone else.

  • Guardian

    Here, here!!! 1% VAT + continue with the earmarked portion of the gasoline tax dedicated to roads.

  • Tag

    Here's a blue ribbon idea. Enact a 1% VAT tax on all goods and services with the revenue designated specifically for highway improvement. This money would be sacred and could not be reallocated for other uses. I, for one, would be happy to pay an additional 1% tax in lieu of dodging pot holes, replacing bent wheels, constant realignments or worrying that a bridge will end up on top of me.

    • AX MAN

      A VAT Tax, designated for road repair, what a laugh, that will work as well as gasoline tax designated for road work, our gasoline tax is the fifth largest gasoline tax in the nation, we have so much money that we pay flagman 32.00 dollars per hours, with that much money, why are we having problems keeping up with road work, very simple, no leader ship., ask for an accounting, where the gasoline tax goes, you will find not much, in building roads.

    • Shadow

      What is the difference between a VAT and a Sales Tax? There is no value added when you sell a product, only when you do something to add to its value. Being a retailer does do that.