Posts Tagged ‘West Virginia Brownfields’

Early Bird Registration is Open for the 2016 #WVBrownfields Conference

Written by Andrew Stacy on . Posted in Blog, Events, News

Register by August 5 to receive the early bird rate

Conference-Banner-Website

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Early bird registration is now open for the 2016 #WVBrownfields Conference. The event, hosted by the West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Centers, will be held Sept. 7-8 at the Marriott Town Center in Charleston.

“Reclaim. Restore. Revitalize.” is the theme for this year’s conference, which will feature sessions covering all aspects of brownfields redevelopment, including project financing and deal structuring, downtown redevelopment, community engagement, specialty training on remediation, networking receptions, and the inaugural Central Appalachian Regional Brownfields Summit on Sept. 8.

“We are very excited for this year’s conference and we are particularly excited about partnering with other Central Appalachian states, agencies and service providers to host the Central Appalachian Regional Brownfields Summit,” said Patrick Kirby, director of the Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center at West Virginia University.

“Part of figuring out the redevelopment puzzle is collaboration and learning from others. We feel that the West Virginia Brownfields Conference is the perfect forum for that regional collaboration and the Summit will be something that is beneficial to both West Virginia and the Central Appalachian Region.”

The 2016 #WVBrownfields Conference will kick off with three pre-conference workshops on the afternoon of Sept. 6, followed by a Networking Welcome Reception. The first full day of the Conference, Sept. 7, will feature programming and sessions related to brownfield redevelopment in West Virginia, followed that evening by a Regional Networking Reception. The second day, Sept. 8, will feature sessions covering regional brownfields topics impacting Central Appalachia.

This premier redevelopment event attracts over 200 stakeholders including regional EPA officials, economic development professionals, real estate developers, lawyers, state and local officials, environmental professionals, entrepreneurs, planners, bankers, investors, and community redevelopment professionals.

For more information, to register, and to consider becoming a sponsor or exhibitor for the 2016 #WVBrownfields Conference, visit the Conference webpage.

-WVU-

as/5/18/16

CONTACT: Andrew Stacy, West Virginia Water Research Institute
304.293.7085, astacy@mail.wvu.edu

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION RECEIVES MULTIPLE EPA BROWNFIELD GRANTS

Written by Marvin Six, Business Development Corporation of the Northern Panhandle on . Posted in Media, News

BDC Board Chairman Announces $600,000 USEPA Coalition Grant Award to Brooke-Hancock-Jefferson counties
and two clean-up grant awards ($158,500) in Weirton

The Business Development Corporation of the Northern Panhandle (BDC) has received a highly competitive 2016 US Environmental Protection Agency Brownfields Coalition Assessment Grant. The award will benefit Brooke and Hancock counties in West Virginia and Jefferson County in Ohio and specifically benefit sites in Newell, New Cumberland, Weirton, Wellsburg, Toronto, Steubenville, and Mingo Junction.

The grant of $600,000, the maximum award allowed, will assist in the environmental assessment and eventual repurposing of potentially contaminated properties within the coalition area.

“This U.S. EPA grant is critically important in removing barriers to repurposing and job growth in a region that is already strong on economic development fundamentals, such as industry diversification, transportation, and a trained labor force,” said BDC Board Chair William D’Alesio. “Eradicating contaminants on Brownfield sites will increase the fiscal stability of our communities by allowing vacant properties to again contribute to the tax base. It will also help improve the health of residents by cleaning up our environment. This effort demonstrates the strength our three counties and two states can have when we work together toward a common goal—jobs.”

“We are extremely pleased our coalition was the recipient of this major $600,000 USEPA award to be used for our environmental assessments,” said Board Chair Deborah Venci of the Jefferson County Port Authority (Port Authority). “Repurposing our underutilized land assets is a top priority of our coalition. Not only are these sites eventually remediated and redeveloped for the creation of jobs, but environmental justice is served by eliminating detrimental health effects for our communities and their residents.”

The BDC and Port Authority have identified at least 6 vacant, abandoned, or underused sites in six communities. The EPA grant will help fund an environmental assessment of these sites, focusing on contamination stemming from petroleum and other hazardous materials. The funding is distributed through the EPA Brownfields Program, which cleans up and reinvests in sites that are contaminated—or perceived to be so—and have limited redevelopment potential because of potential liability.

The BDC also received two USEPA Clean-up Grants for the former Jimmy Carey Stadium ($52,500) and The Lodge at the Williams ($106,000). BDC Executive Director Patrick Ford is hopeful these cleanup grants will kick start the repurposing of the former Jimmy Carey Stadium and the historic community landmark The Lodge at the Williams Golf and Country Club.

“Our assessment projects have lead to major clean-ups, repurposing, and job creation at sites such as: Rock Springs Business Park (Chester), Chrysler Dealership (Newell), Three Springs Business Park (Weirton), and the Beech Bottom Industrial Park (Beech Bottom). Strategically-based attention, with the use of these grants, make it possible to assess, remediate, repurpose, attract investment, and create jobs for our community,” said Ford.

Ford added that these grants, totaling $758,500, would not have been possible without the support, draft writing, and data gathering assistance of our partners; including U.S. Congressman David McKinley, R-WV, the Brooke-Hancock-Jefferson Planning Commission, the Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center, the Jefferson County Port Authority, the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, the Benedum Foundation, the board and staff of the BDC, and many other community organizations and volunteers.

About the BDC
Formed in 1993 and chartered as a 501-C3 (private, not for profit) organization, the BDC is the designated economic development organization for Brooke and Hancock counties. The BDC is dedicated to creating jobs and encouraging private investment in the northern panhandle. The BDC gets its support from the WV Development Office, WV Economic Development Authority, USEDA, USEPA, Benedum Foundation, private investors, Brooke and Hancock Counties, and the cities of Weirton, Beech Bottom, Bethany, Weirton, New Cumberland, and Chester.

NBAC Director Testifies on BUILD Act Before U.S. Senate Committee

Written by Andrew Stacy on . Posted in Blog, Media, News

On March 2, Senate Hearing 2Patrick Kirby, director of the Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center at West Virginia University, provided testimony on the BUILD Act before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works. The hearing focused on Senate Bill 1479, Brownfields Utilization, Investment, and Local Development (BUILD) Act of 2015, Senate Bill 2446, Improving Coal Combustion Residuals Regulation Act of 2016 and Discussion Draft of Good Samaritan Cleanup of Orphan Mines Act of 2016.

In his testimony, Kirby discussed why the BUILD Act matters. Specifically, he noted that the BUILD Act expands the eligibility of certain types of property to apply for brownfields funds, expands eligible applicants to include non-profit organizations which are often the entity in the community best suited to help move the project forward and eliminated the prohibition of the use of the funds to cover administrative costs, which can be a large task.

Watch Kirby’s testimony here (his testimony begins at 1:21:30) or you can find a pdf version of his testimony here.

New EPA Brownfields Videos Highlight West Virginia Partnerships and Projects

Written by Andrew Stacy on . Posted in Media, News

The Environmental Protection Agency has released two Brownfields Partnership videos highlighting successful projects and partnerships in the Mountain State. The videos showcase the value of partnerships in navigating the brownfield redevelopment process from beginning to completion. The role of teamwork and partnerships between communities, the private sector and government is key because of the complexity brownfields redevelopment.

Brownfields Partnership Video (short version, 3:25):

The Taylor, Smith & Taylor Pottery site in Chester, in the northern panhandle of West Virginia is featured in both videos. Also shown are sites in Beech Bottom and Wellsburg. Interviews include speakers from the Business Development Corporation of the Northern Panhandle, Brooke Hancock Jefferson Metropolitan Planning Commission, Hancock County and West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) in addition to a Chester community member. The long version features additional interviews with Patrick Kirby, director of the Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center, Patricia Hickman, director of Land Restoration at WVDEP and others.

Brownfields Partnership Video (long version, 7:26):