Seminar will address whats B.A.D.

WEIRTON – An effort is being organized to go after all the B.A.D. buildings in Hancock and Brooke counties. On Tuesday, representatives of several local communities will gather with the hope of launching B.A.D. Building Teams in the area. B.A.D. stands for Brownfield, Abandoned and Dilapidated. Sponsored by the Business Development Corp. of the Northern Panhandle, Tuesday's meeting will be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack and Resort. “This is an offshoot of the brownfield program from the Northern West Virginia Brownfield program,” Marvin Six, assistant director of the BDC, said. “It's a statewide program.” Six explained that whether it is a collection of houses, old commercial sites, gas stations or other locations, with issues such as asbestos, petroleum, lead paint or even drugs, all local communities have their problem properties. Through Tuesday's conference, local officials will have an opportunity to learn about ways to create community-wide BAD building redevelopment plans, become more familiar with the tools of the program, complete surveys for identifying such sites in their towns and explore strategies to address them. “Not all communities have an established program,” Six noted. Weirton, for example, has established a building enforcement committee, while Chester has a set of property ordinances. Bethany and Newell, Six explained, have no regulations or process to address such issues. Six explained each community will be able to develop their own program – if they choose to have one – structuring it to address their own unique situations. “We're not trying to tell them what to do,” Six said. “We're not trying to make everything uniform.”

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