Governor Candidate Salango visits Wood County

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PARKERSBURG, W.Va.-(WTAP) A Democratic candidate for governor in May West Virginia primary visited Parkersburg Friday.

Kanawha County Commissioner Ben Salango announced his candidacy for Governor. (Courtesy: WSAZ)

Ben Salango held a noontime "meet and greet" with local Democrats at the Blennerhassett Hotel, and did door-to-door campaigning.

The Kanawha County Commissoner is among five Democratsand seven Republicans-including current governor Jim Justice-whose name is on the ballot.

And he believes the Mountain State's biggest problem is its continued population decline.

"For the first time since 1930,we're below 1.8 million people, and that's not getting the governor's attention," Salango says. "That's the only way to change the trajectory of West Virginia, is to stop the population decline. We need to focus on economic development and give kids a opportunity when they get out of school. We don't want them to leave; we want them to stay here."

Salango believes a different approach is needed to economic development, one which highlights all of West Virginia's regions, including the Mid-Ohio Valley.