In an executive meeting, the Raleigh County Commission agreed to donate $10,000 to the Beckley-Raleigh County Convention Center to help repair a gas leak that occurred in October.
According to Andrea Akers Beckley Raleigh County Convention Center General Manager, the gas leak, which occurred outside in the parking lot, was discovered when Mountaineer Gas was installing new gas lines across the street.
The center’s gas line was original to the 1962 building and had been slowly leaking over time.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the center has had very little activity since March. Most employees have been furloughed and this year’s revenue is down 80 percent, according to Akers.
“They’ve really been put in a bind,” said Raleigh County Commission President Dave Tolliver.
Tolliver stated that the county, the city and the Raleigh County Board of Education all agreed to donate $10,000 to go towards the cost of repairs.
Originally, repairs were projected to cost $60,000, but Akers said the overall total came to nearly $80,000.
The gas lines have been repaired and the potholes in the parking lot caused by the leak are scheduled to be repaired in the spring.
“We are thankful that it has been fixed,” Akers said. “There was no heat in the arena in October. We had no hot water and not heat because everything runs on a gas boiler system.”
Although the repairs have been finished, the center has only received $30,000, leaving them $50,000 away from the total cost of repairs.
Akers says the center is remaining optimistic that they will obtain the needed amount.
“We have reached out to the governor and have talked to our local legislatures, but they can’t help because they aren’t in session. We are just hopeful that something will come up soon.”