What’s in the bill? Appropriations packages fund additional projects in southern WV

WASHINGTON, DC (WOAY) – A second package of bills that will keep the federal government funded and avoid a shutdown was passed by Congress and signed into law by President Biden at the last minute last week.

That package also includes tens of millions of dollars for additional projects in Southern West Virginia.

Several local organizations are getting money to build and improve facilities.

The Summers County Commission will receive $3,000,000 to renovate and expand the emergency department of Summers County ARH.

Bluefield State University College of Nursing and Allied Health Expansion will get $7,145,000 to build a new healthcare training facility.

The Camden-on-Gauley Medical Center will construct a new building with the help of $5,000,000 in federal funds.

The Charleston Area Medical Center will build a multi-specialty physician facility in Roncerverte to the tune of $7,516,000 in federal dollars.

The West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine will get $6,000,000 to build a fully equipped addition to its Frederic W. Smith Science Building.

Millions will be spent on economic development.

The Greenbrier County Economic Development Corporation is getting $819,000 for its commercialization center to help small businesses use the commercial space and technical support services.

The New River Gorge Regional Development Authority is getting $750,000 to hire a new coordinator for its New River Gorge Working Group and establish a technical assistance fund.

County and city governments are getting funds to make improvements.

The city of Hinton will spend $595,000 to improve its stormwater collection efforts.

Monroe County will get $750,000 to upgrade its emergency communication system.

Ansted will spend $202,000 on a “hire and equip” project.

Hundreds of thousands of dollars will fund education initiatives.

The Greenbrier Valley Theatre will receive $350,000 to support its youth education program. The money will fund Wonderfest and STEM and arts programs for underserved youth.

The bill was supported by three of the four members of West Virginia’s congressional delegation.

Last week, Representative Carol Miller told WOAY that she voted for the bill because of the need to fund essential federal services in defense and at the border. She also touted the importance of local projects being funded by the package.

That attitude is shared by both of West Virginia’s senators.

“I was proud to secure key priorities for our state and our nation that will help address the crisis at our southern border, reign-in radical federal regulations, promote all-of-the-above American energy, and ensure West Virginia coal miners and their communities get the federal resources they deserve,” Senator Joe Manchin said in a statement.

“This six-bill package includes important resources that increase pay for our troops and strengthen our national defense and the relationships with our global allies, in addition to the practical impacts to West Virginians. These bills help fight the opioid epidemic, improve our healthcare facilities and workforce, and strengthen economic development initiatives,” Senator Shelley Moore Capito said.

Like Miller, Capito said she had issues with the bill and the way it was brought to the floor, but ultimately voted to approve it because she felt it was adequate.

“I wish we could have had an appropriations process that was open for floor discussion on each separate bill, including amendments, and free of shutdown drama. Unfortunately, that is not what Leader Schumer prefers,” Capito said in a statement. “Regardless, after negotiation and compromise, I am pleased that so many West Virginia priorities I have fought for were addressed in these bills.”

Alex Mooney, the representative for the northern half of the state, voted against the bill.

Coverage of a previous appropriations bill can be found here.

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