Office of Minority Affairs takes listening tour to Barbour, Preston, Taylor and Tucker counties

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The Herbert Henderson Office of Minority Affairs (HHOMA) continues its statewide listening tour in October with stops in Barbour, Preston, Taylor, and Tucker counties.

The tour was launched in August to hear what communities need and how the state’s American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) allocation can help. HHOMA will continue to conduct the tour through December 2022.

Congress passed the ARPA to stimulate the nation’s recovery from the economic and health effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. West Virginia has been allocated $1.6 billion of ARPA funding.

“We all have a story of how the COVID pandemic has affected us. We have ideas on how we can recover together as a state. This listening tour is your chance to be heard,” said Jill Upson, executive director of HHOMA. “We want to identify what are the communities’ needs and where investments should be allocated. Governor Jim Justice has called for transparency, sustainability, and sound fiscal management that strengthens equity and includes unserved and underserved populations in our state.”

The scheduled stops are:

Wednesday, Oct. 6, 6:30 p.m. – Preston County
Craig Civic Center
313 Tunnelton St, Kingwood, WV 26537

Thursday, Oct. 7, 6:30 p.m. – Taylor County
Church of Good Shepherd United Methodist Church
3025 Lucas Dairy Rd, Grafton, WV 26354

Monday, Oct. 18, 6:30 p.m. – Tucker County
Parsons Community Center
96 Parkwood Ln, Parsons, WV 26287

Wednesday, Oct. 20, 6:30 p.m. – Barbour County
Lil’ Moe’s Taj Moe Hal
31 N. Main St, Philippi, WV 26416

At each stop, the HHOMA team will meet with local community leaders, followed by public forums where all community members will be invited to receive information and share their ideas.

Topics of discussion will include the following:
• Pandemic-related challenges
• Targeting greatest needs
• Making an impact
• Sustainability
• Pooling resources

Upcoming event dates and locations will be announced throughout the listening tour and can be found online at minorityaffairs.wv.gov/ARPAtour. Details will also be shared on HHOMA’s social media pages.

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