CHARLESTON, W.Va. — State lawmakers were told Monday a final decision hasn’t been made concerning the future of the Anthony Correctional Center in Greenbrier County closed last year because of black mold.
Betsy Jividen, commissioner of the state Division of Corrections, told a legislative interim committee it would cost $25 million to rebuild the center from the ground up and $9 million to $14 million to make the necessary repairs.
“Right now the decision is under review and pending as to whether or not the facility should be demolished or whether in fact it can be rehabbed,” Jividen said.
Three different inspection reports advised the state to close the facility after mold was found in the main building. Jividen made the decision last May to transfer the 200 young-adult offenders to other correctional facilities. She told lawmakers Monday the men remain at Denmar Correctional Center in Pocahontas County and the women at Lakin Correctional Center in Mason County.
“I’m happy and pleased to report that we have been able to carry on almost seamlessly the delivery of the statutory program requirements for Anthony Center inmates, we’re just not doing it at Anthony Center,” Jividen said.
The closing of Anthony Center cost the Division of Corrections 220 beds.
Jividen also told lawmakers Monday her agency’s other correctional facilities in the state are “in desperate need of repair.”
“We have $173 million in maintenance needs and $146 million is unfunded,” she said. “Even our newer buildings are 20 to 30 years old. Of course when you’re housing the kind of populations we are you cannot oftentimes put off any of the kinds of repairs that we’re talking about.”
The state Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation has nearly two dozen separate facilities.