Blight

Ray Moeller, an extension agent with West Virginia State University, has been leading efforts to address the many abandoned and dilapidated properties that litter the landscape in Richwood. He organized and led a team from Richwood to the BAD (Blighted, Abandoned, Dilapidated) Buildings Summit hosted in Huntington by the state-wide APC (Abandoned Property Coalition), of which Ray is a founding member in representation of the NRGRDA. The challenges are great regarding volume of dilapidated structures, legal gyrations, and financial cost of removal. Ray secured an in-kind donation of services from Boggs Environmental, who came to town and spent two days providing hazardous material preliminary assessment for 45 properties. In November, the Richwood Nuisance Property Committee (NPC) decided to pursue several “low hanging fruit” opportunities in the city, including the site of a former church building, which now lays in ruins. One of the primary successes on this front has been reconstituting the Richwood City Building Commission (RCBC) and having them work in collaboration with the NPC. These groups meet monthly in a scheduled fashion which allows them to conduct business separately, with an overlap of time that provides interaction. The RCBC will be exploring avenues for funding a simple Land Banking strategy in addressing nuisance properties in Richwood.

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