Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Teacher Pay Raise Bill Heads to Governor as Walkout Looms

With a statewide teacher walkout looming for Thursday and Friday, the West Virginia Legislature is sending a pay raise bill to the governor that awaits his signature. After the Senate approved an amendment from the body’s Rules Committee, the House debated the latest version of Senate Bill 267 for nearly two hours before deciding to concur with the Senate’s amendment.

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The New Generation of Black Lung

For many years we thought that black lung was a disease of the past. But it has actually stricken a whole new generation of miners, and in some ways, it’s worse than before.

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This Week in West Virginia History is a co-production of West Virginia Public Broadcasting and the West Virginia Humanities Council.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / e-WV

On February 21, 1913, the legislature passed an act creating a workers’ compensation system.

It had been a major campaign issue for incoming Governor Henry Hatfield. In his work as a coalfields physician, Hatfield recognized the need to support injured workers financially.

The system went into effect in October 1913. In the case of a fatal accident, workers’ compensation paid the funeral expenses of the deceased and a stipend for widows and children. In the case of partial disability, workers received half their salaries.

Bluefield State College
E-WV / WV Humanities Council

On February 21, 1895, the legislature established the Bluefield Colored Institute, which would become Bluefield State College.

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, thousands of African-Americans moved into Mercer, McDowell, Raleigh, and Fayette counties to work in the mines and for the railroads. At the time, there was a shortage of higher education opportunities for blacks in West Virginia, particularly black teachers.

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

With a statewide teacher walkout looming for Thursday and Friday, the West Virginia Legislature is sending a pay raise bill to the governor that awaits his signature.

After the Senate approved an amendment from the body’s Rules Committee, the House debated the latest version of Senate Bill 267 for nearly two hours before deciding to concur with the Senate’s amendment.

On The Legislature Today, the looming statewide teacher work stoppage is scheduled for later this week, and there are several related issues before the Finance and Education Committees. Host Andrea Lannom chats with Del. Paul Espinosa, R-Jefferson, Chairman of the House Education Committee and member of the House Finance committee. Also joining the conversation is Del. Larry Rowe, D-Kanawha, member of both the House Education and Finance Committees.

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A pastor in Fairmont has publicly supported a local human rights ordinance that would protect LGBTQ people from discrimination. But the endorsement could cost her church its spot in a local Baptist association and from the West Virginia Baptist Convention.


Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia House of Delegates has passed a bill that would expand a work requirement for some people who receive federal food assistance.

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A group of Marshall University students, faculty and staff have assisted in stopping child trafficking cases in Latin America. The work was done through a partnership with the nonprofit Operation Underground Railroad.

The work involved sex trafficking cases in Latin America, the Caribbean and Southeast Asia. Select students in Marshall’s Open Source Intelligence Exchange program worked to provide open source intelligence collection and analysis for law enforcement and other clients. Open source refers to data collection from publicly available sources.

Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The Ohio Valley’s numbers on the opioid crisis are grim, especially so in West Virginia, which has the nation’s highest rate of overdose deaths.

But those numbers could give health workers the ability to identify people at risk of drug overdose and then reach them before they die.

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Outside of a 4th Avenue bus stop in Huntington, Ronni Stone is smoking a cigarette. She started when she was 15 years old and has been smoking for 35 years. She says she’s tried to quit about four times but was only able to last for about a week before the withdrawal symptoms made her light up again.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, tension continues to mount at the Statehouse over education-related issues. Thousands of teachers and public service personnel rallied on the Capitol steps over the weekend demanding change. On last night’s episode of The Legislature Today, host Andrea Lannom spoke with Senate President Mitch Carmichael and Senate Minority Leader Roman Prezioso. We have an excerpt from that interview.

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