CHARLESTON, WV – Gov. Jim Justice held an event today in Union, WV to present the Monroe County Commission with a check for $5 million to be used to renovate their courthouse.
The courthouse, built in 1881, has been closed for more than three years due to water seeping into the top of the building causing mold and deterioration. In the meantime, court proceedings have been held in the basement of the Union Fire Department. Monroe County is the only county in the state without a functional courtroom.
“When Commissioner Melvin Young came to my office in October of last year, I promised him that I would do everything in my power to make this become a reality,” said Gov. Justice. “It took a lot of hard work by a lot of great West Virginians that all pulled the rope together. So today is a really special day for Monroe County and a day that I'll never forget.”
The courtroom, judge’s chambers, assessor’s office, and the basement were all found to have mold and will be renovated.
Gov. Justice was joined today by Monroe County County Commission President Kevin Galford, commissioners Melvin Young and Kevin Mann, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia John A. Hutchison, and President of the Greenbrier County Economic Development Corporation William Shiflet, among others.
“In October of last year, I met with the Governor and told him we needed help to get some money here in the county,” said Monroe County Commissioner Melvin Young. “And there's a lot of people involved, but he told me one thing that day that's the truth. He said ‘we're gonna do our best to take care of you.’ And I sure do appreciate it from the County Commission and everybody involved.”
“We met with the right people, we got our greetings out to the folks in the Senate and the House and the Governor,” said Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia John A. Hutchison. “And once we got the right people talking, it took on a life of its own, and it went through, and clearly the Governor was the driving force behind this, and he understood what needed to be done. He understood what the County Commission could do in Monroe County and what they couldn't do, and they couldn't come up with $5 million. And he figured out a way to get that done.”
With the renovations, the courthouse will need to be brought into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
The project is estimated to take about a year to complete.