CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The former home of two ousted state officials could soon become headquarters of an established Charleston lobbying firm, as long as the city's Board of Zoning Appeals approves a variance on the California Avenue property.
Chad Robinson, a lobbyist for Compensation Strategies Inc., said Wednesday the lobbying group is in the process of purchasing former Attorney General Darrell McGraw and State School Superintendent Jorea Marple's former home at 81 California Ave.
The three-story, off-white stucco house is located on the corner of California and Quarrier streets, a stone's throw from the state Capitol's east wing.
McGraw and Marple put the house up for sale in January, and have since retired to Florida.
Last November, the state Board of Education fired Marple after McGraw lost his office to Republican challenger Patrick Morrisey.
"It's probably the best location on the block," Robinson said. "That whole triangular block, the majority are now associations or lobbying groups. It's a pristine location.
Robinson said the firm began looking at the property during the legislative session earlier this year. The sale did not go through a real estate agent. Compensation Strategies is purchasing the home directly from Marple and McGraw.
Robinson would not say how much the firm would pay for the house, because the deal is not yet finished. They are waiting on a decision by the city Board of Zoning Appeals to approve a parking variance.
According to city ordinance, residential properties get two parking spots. Offices abide by different rules. Office spaces are required to have one parking space for every 300 square feet in the structure.
Lori Brannon, neighborhood planner for the Charleston Planning Department, said McGraw and Marple's house would be required to have eight parking spaces under that rule.
"They're requesting a variance so they don't have to comply with that ordinance," Brannon said.