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Latest News
WVU Parkersburg Receives $440,000 to Launch Two New Programs
Friday, 27 January 2012 00:00

Parkersburg, W.Va. 1/27/12 – West Virginia University at Parkersburg is the recipient of two grants totaling $440,000 from the Community and Technical College System of West Virginia (CTCS). With funding approved, the college will introduce associate of applied science degree programs in Diversified Agriculture and Culinary Arts. The two programs will work in conjunction with and support one another.


To prepare for the rapidly changing agricultural industry in West Virginia, WVU Parkersburg’s Diversified Agriculture program will provide students with technical knowledge in such areas as plant sciences, landscaping, field crop rotation, and agricultural economics and business strategies. With the grant money, the college will hire a full-time instructor to coordinate the program. Additionally, equipment will be purchased to establish the program’s 5-acre outdoor learning lab, which will be located at the main campus.

Large Crowd Hears Conference Speakers Share Concerns About Funding, Infrastructure
Tuesday, 15 November 2011 00:00

2011 Transportation Conference

West Virginians for Better Transportation hosted its third statewide transportation conference yesterday at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Charleston, and more than 130 people from across the state attended.  The meeting, 2011 Transportation Conference, provided attendees with information on important transportation issues and the outlook for transportation funding.  The conference, which was sponsored by BrickStreet Insurance, also provided an overview of a strategic campaign that WVBT will be undertaking next year.

Among the conference’s featured speakers were the state’s three West Virginia congressional representatives:

  • 3rd District Representative Nick Rahall,
  • 2nd District Representative Shelley Moore Capito, and
  • 1st District Representative David McKinley.

Two of the state’s congressional representatives – Rahall and Capito -- serve on the influential U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, with Rahall being the ranking member.

Other conference speakers included W.Va. Department of Transportation Secretary Paul Mattox; the chairs of the Finance Committees in the W.Va. Legislature – Senator Roman Prezioso and Delegate Harry Keith White; and Senator Robert Beach, Chairman of the W.Va. Senate’s Transportation & Infrastructure Committee.  Sherry Conway Appel, the National Transportation Campaign Marketing Manager for the American Association of State Highway & Transportation Officials (AASHTO), led the attendees in an afternoon strategy session on how to position and promote transportation funding needs in a post-recession, budget-deficit world.  (Appel’s slide presentations may be viewed by clicking here.)

Joe Deneault, WVBT’s Treasurer, also shared details on WVBT’s new strategic plan for 2012-2013, which is designed to expand the organization’s education efforts and “make transportation investment and improvement a major campaign issue during the 2012 state and federal election cycle.”

Conference News:

Surplus state funds unlikely to go for highways
Charleston Daily Mail, Nov. 15, 2011


Infrastructure frustrates legislators

Charleston Daily Mail, Nov. 15, 2011


Rahall continues push for infrastructure bill
The Charleston Gazette, Nov. 25, 2011


W.Va. Roads Group Has Annual Conference in Charleston
The State Journal, Nov. 15, 2011

Talking Transportation 
MetroNews, Nov. 14, 2011

W.Va. Finding Ways to Stretch Transportation Dollars
WSAZ-TV, Nov. 14, 2011

Need A Speaker?

If you would like to have a speaker from West Virginians for Better Transportation come talk to your group or organization about transportation issues, please complete this request form:


AH&LA Requests Meeting to Explain Benefits of Travel & Conferences
Friday, 11 November 2011 00:00

Today AH&LA responded to President Obama’s Executive Order that jeopardizes America’s lodging industry and hampers the effectiveness of government.

The Executive Order directs agencies to decrease travel and conference-related spending by 20% before 2013. The main suggestions are to increase videoconferencing and to utilize federal space for meetings. In addition, each agency will designate a senior-level official to be responsible for reducing travel costs.

While expressing support for efforts to rein in waste and fraud, AH&LA believes that taking an indiscriminate and sweeping approach will not solve the inherent issue with wasteful spending and may result in unintended consequences.

AH&LA stated in the letter that this policy change could have serious repercussions across the lodging and travel industries by discouraging legitimate and necessary business meetings and events. As such, the Executive Order is counterproductive to both governmental effectiveness and the goal of reviving the American economy. AH&LA encourages the Administration to target abusive spending such as the approximately $100 million in unauthorized travel upgrades by federal employees that has been documented rather than targeting productive meetings for elimination.

AH&LA has requested a meeting with the Obama Administration to discuss this issue and find ways in which the lodging industry can assist in efforts to control costs without placing the effectiveness of the government and thousands of American jobs in jeopardy.

To read AH&LA’s letter to the President, click here.

For more information on the Executive Order, click here.

Voters Reject Restaurant Tax; Officials 'Disappointed'
Thursday, 10 November 2011 00:00

Arkansas (Fort Smith) - Fort Smith voters on Tuesday overwhelmingly rejected a 1 percent prepared-food tax that would have provided an estimated $1.8 million annually to fund operation of the Fort Smith Convention Center. With about 22 percent of registered voters in Fort Smith participating in the election, 62.7 percent voted no and 37.3 percent yes, 5,612 to 3,339, according to unofficial election results. The board voted 4-3 in February to levy the tax by ordinance to make up a funding shortfall expected to occur in the operation of the Fort Smith Convention Center sometime in early 2012. A program that provided state tourism turnback funds used to finance operation of the center — and make further capital improvements — ended in 2010. 

AECOM Strategic Tourism Plan Survey
Thursday, 03 November 2011 00:00

As part of its work on the West Virginia Tourism Plan, AECOM would like to begin to develop an industry database. The purpose of the database is to learn about your involvement in the West Virginia tourism industry and to seek your ideas regarding the future direction of tourism in the state. Please take a few minutes and complete the survey located at the link below.


Return your completed survey to:

West Virginia Division of Tourism
90 MacCorkle Ave., SW
South Charleston, WV 25303

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