Essential reporting in volatile times.

Not a Subscriber yet? Click here to take advantage of All access digital limited time offer $13.95 per month EZ Pay.

Interested in Donating? Click #ISupportLocal for more information on supporting local journalism.


The Kanawha County Commission on Thursday awarded an $8.7 million contract to Hayslett Construction of Hurricane to build the bulk of the Shawnee Park Multi-Sports Complex and closed on a $10 million bond issue to pay for that work and other expenses associated with the project.

Hayslett was low bidder among seven contractors who submitted sealed bids for the project, which will take shape on the site of the former Shawnee Park Golf Course.

Work to be done by Hayslett includes construction of six collegiate-size soccer fields, four collegiate baseball and softball fields, several grass practice fields, a 305-vehicle parking lot adjacent to an existing 200-vehicle lot and the refurbishment of existing outdoor basketball courts.

Artificial turf for the soccer and baseball fields will be purchased later, following negotiations with potential suppliers.

The bid for the winning construction contract contained a prevailing wage clause, which Commission President Kent Carper said showed that contractors need not hire discount labor in order to submit low bids.

“I don’t think we’re going to see out-of-state workers building this,” he said.

Later in the meeting, the commission closed on a $10 million bond issue, to be administered by Huntington Bank, to help pay for the sports complex. The bond issue was authorized in August by the Kanawha County Building Commission.

The logo for the new sports complex, designed by Capital High senior Jasmine Settle, was unveiled and accepted by the commission. Settle was selected following a competition involving 122 Kanawha County high school students. Also unveiled was the runner-up logo designed by Dalton Lucas, also of Capital High, which will also be on display at the sports complex.

The commission donated $1,500 to Capital High’s art program.

In other action, the commission voted to open the Kanawha County Emergency Ambulance Authority’s medical clinic, currently available to employees of the sheriff’s department, KCEA and Metro 911, to all Kanawha County employees.

The commission’s legislative agenda for the upcoming session includes seeking increased pay for poll workers; opposing the Department of Health and Human Resources’ decision not to allocate to Kanawha County any of the funding appropriated during the 2017 session for drug treatment facility expansion; seeking uniform bail amounts for non-violent crimes, and making it a felony to make threats against judges and prosecutors.

Reach Rick Steelhammer at rsteelhammer@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-5169 or follow @rsteelhammer on Twitter.