Business, Latest News, State Government

Governor announces agreement for GreenPower electric school bus company coming to South Charleston

MORGANTOWN — Although Gov. Jim Justice is isolating at home after testing positive for COVID-19, his office has announced that GreenPower Motor Co. has signed an agreement with the state to lease/purchase a 9.5-acre manufacturing facility in South Charleston, including an 80,000-square-foot building, where the company will manufacture zero-emission, all-electric school buses, bringing hundreds of new jobs and millions of dollars in economic impact to West Virginia.

“I’d like to be the first to welcome GreenPower to West Virginia with open arms. We’re thrilled that you’ve chosen to live and work in the paradise that our state offers,” Justice said in a press release.

The operation will bring up to 200 new jobs to the state when manufacturing begins later this year, with the potential workforce to eventually reach up to 900 new jobs when full production is reached in 24 months.

“As we continue to diversify our economy, manufacturing these zero-emission school buses in West Virginia will open up a world of opportunities for our state,” Justice said.

Officials with GreenPower said, once the facility reaches full production, the total economic impact could reach nearly $500 million per year.

“GreenPower is pleased to announce its zero-emissions, all-electric school bus manufacturing operations are expanding east of the Mississippi River, with West Virginia becoming our school bus manufacturing base of operations for the region,” said Brendan Riley, president of GreenPower.

“West Virginia has shown us to be a pro-business state that has a workforce ready to take advantage of clean energy jobs,” Riley said. “Our facility will provide both training and immediate employment opportunities with a competitive wage.”

GreenPower will partner with West Virginia’s Workforce Development Board and BridgeValley Community & Technical College for employee recruitment and training. Additional details on this aspect of the project will be provided in the future.

TWEET @DominionPostWV