McKinley Applauds Announcement of Grants to Reclaim Abandoned Mine Lands, Spur Economic Development

Nearly $25 million in grants, includes three projects in Ohio, Monongalia and Harrison Counties

Washington, D.C. — Congressman David B. McKinley, P.E. (WV-01) applauded today’s Abandoned Mine Land Grant award announcements made by Governor Jim Justice and Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Harold Ward. Three projects announced today are located in North Central West Virginia and the Northern Panhandle.

“All across West Virginia, there are legacy mining sites that are holding back new development and are restricting the use of the water and land resources around them. Cleaning up abandoned mine lands will not only put West Virginians to work in the short term, but provides promise for future economic development,” said Rep. McKinley.

“Listening to the enthusiastic award recipients today, I’m proud and encouraged by these West Virginians who share our vision of creating economic development opportunities in their communities and are willing to take on the challenges of restoring mine land sites to put to productive use.”  

“Opportunities to build on West Virginia’s progress cleaning up abandoned mine lands will continue with an influx of $140 million in 2022, and much more expected in the years to come, as a result of the infrastructure bill. This additional funding is specifically dedicated to cleaning up these sites, which serves to improve water quality, health, safety and quality of life in these areas,” said Rep. McKinley

Projects in the First District include:

HARRISON COUNTY: Stonewood I-79 Development – $5,000,000
Construction of three pads of three acres, 29 acres, and 28 acres, as well as three access roads, to be used for light industrial/commercial and/or residential growth in Stonewood.

MONONGALIA COUNTY: Mylan Park RV Resort and Campground – $3,750,000
Project to develop a camping recreation area in Mylan Park on reclaimed mining land, (MP KOA).

OHIO COUNTY: Edible Mountain – $3,200,000
Project to develop approximately 60 acres of abandoned mine lands on Wheeling’s Vineyard Hill into a beautiful and accessible natural space in the heart of downtown.

Governor Justice announced nine grant awards totaling more than $24.7 million.

Click here for additional information and projects.


Background:

The WVDEP’s Office of Abandoned Mine Lands administer the grants announced today, which are provided by the federal government through the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE).

Earlier this year, it was announced that West Virginia will receive an additional $140,751,000 in Fiscal Year 2022 to reclaim abandoned mine lands. This historic amount of funding, made possible by the recently enacted bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, will help ensure the health and safety of West Virginia’s coal communities while driving economic growth and creating good-paying jobs.

The historic Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act provided nearly $11.3 billion in AML funding over 15 years in annual allotments. In West Virginia, these grants will help the State’s Department of Environmental Protection invest in projects that close dangerous mine shafts, reclaim unstable slopes, improve water quality by treating acid mine drainage, and restore water supplies damaged by mining, while providing local jobs including those for former coal workers.

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