MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Commissioners in Monongalia County are thanking Senator Mike Oliverio, R. Monongalia, Delegate Joe Statler, R. Monongalia, Governor Justice, and state Department of Highways leadership for the recent contract awarded to Anderson Excavating LLC.

After years of debate and requests, the DOH has agreed to use a private contractor for some core maintenance work typically done by state workers.
Low staffing levels in the District 4 area allow the state to divert unspent money for labor to a private contractor to get the work done, according to Commissioner Jeff Arnett.

“Hopefully, this project will help with the road trimming in the fall, so we can get everything cleaned up from the spring and summer seasons and also for road cleaning for the ashes that are still on the ground from the winter,” Arnett said.

Bloom talked about years of efforts and negotiations with different leaders and no progress. This latest development is the product of meetings with the municipalities of Monongalia County and state lawmakers (Oliverio and Statler), who have taken the concerns to the top leadership of the state.

“Everyone is going to be watching Anderson Excavating LLC because we’re hoping this will be a three-year-term contract,” Bloom said. “I think it’s something the city of Morgantown has been pushing, the county commission has been pushing, and hopefully it opens the door for more working relations.”

Commissioner Bloom also said a DOH employee, J. David Vaughn has been assigned to work on some of the issues specific to the county, including the maintenance of entry points to the county or city and areas in the county that have had persistent issues.

Bloom, Vaughn and DOH District 4 Engineer Mike Daley will be able to meet as needed to talk about important road issues in the county.

“The individual is very positive, believes he can help us, and has the resources to get it done from the state department,” Bloom said. “And I will say I was quite shocked at the shape of our roads.”

Commissioner Bloom said he will be the point of contact with Vaughn and hopes the residents of the communities in the county will see the benefits through better road conditions and fewer maintenance issues at the gateway areas.

“I’ll be working with them as a designee; the county commissioners and Mike Daly have allowed me to do that,” Bloom said. “I think it’s a positive step—we started with the culverts, and we’re going to look at some of the paving—there are great things that are going to happen.”

During his meeting with Vaughn, Bloom took the opportunity to preview some of the areas they’ll be looking for more DOH support in. The areas are a mix of maintenance problem areas and serious road issues that have lingered, some for as long as five years.

“I mentioned Brockway Avenue; I mentioned Don Knotts Boulevard, the road from Easton Hill to Cheat Lake,” Bloom said. “The major corridors are coming in, and they are going to come up with a plan.”