End of 2020 brings financial stability, optimism to Beckley

BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – 2019 left the city of Beckley on a high note regarding its finances.

As the calendar shifted to 2020 in the middle of the fiscal year, officials began to notice that some business areas were being reduced.

“At first I thought it was an anomaly in the accounting system,” said Beckley Recorder/Treasurer Billie Trump. “But as we looked closer, because of the COVID, because of a number of different things, there was a significant reduction in business in our area. When we got through March into April, we were looking at maybe a $2.5 million reduction in revenue.”

As the pandemic worsened, Beckley had to significantly revise its budget to the state when a new city council came in in July. Capital expenditures were among the areas that were cut, but the result ended up positive.

“We had to maintain our services,” Trump said. “We were very, very proud that nobody was laid off. We tightened out belts, tightened the ship and it was important, because there was so much demand for services.”

Like countless other areas, maintaining financial stability in 2020 has been a challenge. Beckley was able to turn to the Care’s Act to help manage its budget. Heading into 2021, things should be looking up by the end of the fiscal year.

“We were able to recover a lot of expenses by applying to the state for Care’s Act reimbursement,” Trump said. “That helped quite a bit. It seems businesses are picking up.

“Now, we’re very used to operating this way and it looks like there will be an economic upturn.”