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By: Jeremy DeighanMarch 18, 2024

City of Elkins Successfully Removes 11 Dilapidated Structures with DLAP Grant Funding

Elkins W. Va., March 18, 2024: The City of Elkins announces the successful demolition of 11 dilapidated structures throughout the city, made possible through grant funding provided by the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) under the Dilapidated Properties Program (DLAP).

In 2021, WVDEP introduced DLAP through Senate Bill 368, aiming to allocate $30 million statewide to address the challenges posed by dilapidated properties. Recognizing the importance of this initiative, Governor Jim Justice, alongside WVDEP, announced $9.2 million in grant funding in September 2022.

Under DLAP, Elkins received a substantial grant of $300,000 on June 27, 2022, significantly increasing the city’s capacity to address its dilapidated structures. This funding enabled the removal of 11 hazardous properties, contributing to enhanced safety, aesthetics, and economic vitality within the community.

Mayor Jerry Marco emphasized the significance of this achievement.

“The DLAP grant funding has unlocked new potential for improving our city,” he said. “Removing these structures not only enhances safety but also encourages economic development and revitalizes our neighborhoods.”

Working closely with the WVDEP, the City of Elkins identified and demolished structures exhibiting severe deterioration, posing safety and health hazards to residents. Jessie Wagler, Code Enforcement Officer for the City of Elkins, expressed pride in the project’s accomplishments.

“This grant not only helped revitalize the community, but it also helped ease the financial strain on many individuals and businesses during these trying times,” said Wagler.

The partnership between the City of Elkins and WVDEP has been instrumental in advancing these efforts, according to Wagler.

“I am proud to have been able to contribute to this project,” she said. “While it was a lot of footwork and paperwork, it has been worth every picture taken, word typed, and every email sent, and it’s great to have such a strong partner at the state level.”

Wagler identified additional crucial partners.

“There is no way that we could have accomplished all of this without cooperation from the Wastewater, Street, and Water Distribution departments as well as the City of Elkins Police Department and the City Attorney, Gerry Roberts. They all played key roles in supporting the City’s efforts to ensure that this project was successful. Additionally, Mayor Jerry Marco and Mike Kesecker, the Operations Manager, always fully supported our efforts. This project would not have been possible without a huge amount of teamwork and cooperation between departments.”

Looking ahead, the City of Elkins remains committed to addressing dilapidated structures to further enhance the quality of life for its residents. With 13 additional properties identified for demolition, the city continues to prioritize community revitalization and safety.

In line with reporting requirements, Wagler must submit a comprehensive report by the end of March, documenting the progress and costs associated with the demolition project. This report will provide valuable insights into the effectiveness of the DLAP grant funding and the future trajectory of Elkins’ dilapidated properties program.

“The city remains grateful for the support and collaboration of its residents, government agencies, and stakeholders,” says Marco. “Together, we continue to work towards building a stronger and better community for all.”

For more information and a presentation on the most recent updates visit:
https://cityofelkinswv.com/departments/building-code-enforcement-zoning/code-enforcement/dilapidated-structures/

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