RISE West Virginia responds to complaints

Local News

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WOWK) – The agency that provides flood recovery aid in West Virginia is once again defending itself. The “RISE West Virginia” program is designed to get flood victims back into repaired or new homes after the devastating 2016 floods.

However, one subcontractor complained this week that a contractor hired by “RISE” was grossly inflating prices for things like cinder block foundations that are used to raise homes up from floodwaters. The agency says it is following the letter of the law.

“All of our state contracts have gone through the division of purchasing,” says RISE WV Manager Michelle Penaloza. “They have gone through what we require, federal procurement competitive bids. Those bids have been opened with a team. The lowest bidder wins. And we have actually had contracts come in with only one bidder. So that would be a win, right?”

The “RISE” program says it will continue doing its work that way. Meanwhile, A&R Construction, the contractor that complained, said it filed liens against several of the homes today, demanding it be paid $263,000 dollars for work it has completed.

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