Lawmakers fight to restore train service to 'Railroad Days' - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Lawmakers fight to restore train service to 'Railroad Days'


HINTON, W.Va. (WVVA) A week after Amtrak announced their New River Train would no longer offer special train service to Hinton, WVVA News has learned that decision may not be final. 

Special trains run by the Collis P. Huntington Historical Society during 'Railroad Days,' a popular festival in Hinton each October. 

Friday afternoon, U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin announced he has a meeting set up with the Huntington-based historical society on Tuesday.

Prior to news of a meeting on Friday, Hinton's Mayor Joe Blankenship called on the company to re-consider their decision, citing the nearly million dollars in revenue the festival brings in to the city and local organizations. 

"It means so much to our people. We just have to continue to fight. If we lose, we're going down swinging." 

West Virginia Senator Stephen Baldwin, (D) Greenbrier County, was also in Hinton Friday to meet with local leaders. He has reached out to Amtrak to re-consider their decision. 

"This is a tourism opportunity that we do well. And yet we're having to fight this opportunity being taken away by Amtrak, a company that is significantly subsidized by the government. So this is an opportunity for local communities, government, and private entities to work together in a positive way." 

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