News

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

On Friday, both chambers of the state Legislature adopted a $4.225 billion general revenue budget without additional tax revenue for the fiscal year that starts July 1.

King Nique of Real Ones Entertainment

"I've realized there is no recipe for rap."

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Members of the House are not budging on reforming the state’s tax code the way Gov. Jim Justice and now Senators on both sides of the aisle want to.

School Lunch Line
Slick-o-bot / Wikimedia Commons

The West Virginia Board of Education has voted for a 30-day public comment period for proposed policy changes that would tie the state's standard for school meals and snacks with federal minimum requirements.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports the public comment period for proposed changes to Policy 4321.1 received no dissenting votes on Wednesday.

Kara Lofton / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Analysis released this week found West Virginia could be one the most negatively impacted states in the country if Congress passes the House health care bill to replace the Affordable Care Act.  The health policy think tank Kaiser Family Foundation reports reductions in Medicaid or block grant financing would be especially harmful to communities in West Virginia and ten other states.

Greenbrier Resort
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice has ordered a state agency to remove its sponsorship of this year's Greenbrier Classic.

Justice said in a news release Thursday he didn't feel comfortable with the Department of Commerce's participation in the PGA Tour event at The Greenbrier resort he owns.

Broadband Lawsuit
Bidgee / wikimedia commons

Federal authorities say Frontier Communications overcharged West Virginia for $4.7 million of federal grant money in the $126 million project to extend broadband internet to underserved regions of the state.

The Office of Inspector General cites reimbursements for $465,000 for invoice processing fees as "unreasonable" and at least $4.24 million in "unallowable" indirect charges for overhead and administrative expenses.

Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia

Two justices on West Virginia's highest court have published strongly worded dissents criticizing the Supreme Court majority for dismissing medical malpractice lawyers' lawsuit claiming they paid too much for their client's medical records.

HealthPort Technologies on behalf of Charleston Area Medical Center charged them $4,463 or 55 cents per page copied, plus sales tax and shipping.

Elk River
Malepheasant / wikimedia Commons

West Virginia's Public Service Commission on Thursday issued a final settlement order closing its investigation into West Virginia American Water's role in a chemical spill and resulting water crisis in the Charleston area in January 2014.

Thousands of gallons of a coal-cleaning agent leaked from a Freedom Industries storage tank into the Elk River, leaving 300,000 people in nine counties without water for up to nine days. Businesses in the state's largest drinking water system were temporarily shut. Hundreds of people headed to emergency rooms for issues from nausea to rashes after contact with tap water that smelled like licorice.

Nicholas County
David Benbennick / Wikimedia Commons

School board members in a West Virginia county ravaged by the 2016 floods have voted to take legal action to contest the state board's rejection of a plan to consolidate five schools onto one campus.

The Nicholas County Board of Education made the decision Wednesday after the state Board of Education voted 7-1 Tuesday to reject the county's proposed consolidation plan.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, the battle over the state's budget continues at the Capitol. Ashton Marra brings us the latest from Thursday's late-night legislative session.

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Members of the Senate have approved a budget for the upcoming fiscal year -- for a second time this week.

 

The bill they approved Tuesday contains no new revenue for 2018 and makes major cuts to both higher education and Medicaid in order to find a balance, but the new version of the budget bill approved Thursday night is accompanied by yet another tax reform bill that now has bi-partisan support in the state’s upper chamber.

The Oberports

"When we get on stage, I feel like that’s where we’re supposed to be… that’s what we’re supposed to be doing."

Kara Lofton/ West Virginia Public Broadcast

It’s been nearly a year since West Virginia was hit with historical flooding. In this episode, we’re listening back to the voices of those who were impacted by last summer’s floods. On Thursday June 23, 2016, massive flooding swept across most of West Virginia.

Within a tragic 24-36 hour period, at least 23 West Virginians perished. Thousands of homes were flooded, many of them destroyed. There were stories of terror and heroism that came out of this flood.

The West Virginia Department of Education plans a series of public meetings starting next week as it develops a state replacement plan for the No Child Left Behind Act.

States must submit their plans this year to the U.S. Department of Education on the Every Student Succeeds Act, which was signed into law in December 2015 and replaces No Child Left Behind. The state Department of Education's plan will be submitted in September.

Nicholas County
David Benbennick / Wikimedia Commons

School board members in a West Virginia county ravaged by the 2016 floods have voted to take legal action to contest the state board's rejection of a plan to consolidate five schools onto one campus.

The Register-Herald reports the West Virginia Board of Education voted 7-1 on Tuesday to reject Nicholas County's proposed change to the Comprehensive Education Facilities Plan.

Flickr / davidwilson1949

West Virginia has restricted a union at hospitals after it called for the ousting of the state health and human resources department secretary.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports the state bureau for behavioral health and facilities informed the West Virginia Public Workers Union, UE Local 170, on June 8 that out of respect for patients, residents and visitors' privacy, it would no longer be allowed to set up tables at certain facilities. Since 2008, the union has organized in front lobbies and break rooms of public hospitals and health care facilities to sign up employees, distribute information and address grievances.

West Virginia's U.S. senators say the state will get $11.6 million in federal funding for its wildlife programs.

According to Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito, the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources will receive $8.1 million for wildlife restoration and $3.5 million for sport fish restoration from the U.S. Department of the Interior.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, Gov. Jim Justice is still pushing lawmakers to approve some kind of revenue increasing measure to prevent major cuts in the 2018 budget. 

That push, though, comes as members of the House and Senate are debating budget bills based solely on a newly released revenue estimate, not tax reform proposals that were once at the center of budget negotiations.

cityofhuntington.com

West Virginia's U.S. senators say the state's housing programs will get more than $28 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito say the money will enable communities to improve public housing and help some of the state's most vulnerable people get access to safe and stable living conditions.

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