Committee to decide whether to take Little Beaver from state par - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Committee to decide whether to take Little Beaver from state park system


BEAVER,  W.Va. (WVVA) An exploratory committee charged with making a recommendation on the future of Little Beaver State Park met with state leaders on Thursday. . 

During the meeting, state leaders said they are very interested in handing control of the park over to the county.

"This would be a straight transfer with no exchange of money. They would give it to us. But once we get it, we need to operate it efficiently and in the interest of residents of Raleigh County," said Ron Cantley, a member of the exploratory committee. 

State leaders indicated they are paying roughly 20 million dollars each year to maintain West Virginia's 37 state parks and transfer would lighten their load. But the question remains whether Raleigh County can break even on the deal once the maintenance costs are factored in.

The idea is to build a similar set-up to Lake Stephens with beach access, inflatables and food.  But according committee member Steve Davis, fishing would continue to be free. 

"The fishers would continue to fish for free because it is stocked by the DNR and they have a right to fish. We're looking at other opportunities to see how we could increase revenue there and serve residents."

After leaders involved in the talks indicated Thursday it will take an act of the legislature to approve the transfer. Davis expects the committee to have a recommendation by July. 


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