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West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, people are leaving West Virginia at an alarming rate. From 2016 to 2017, more than 15,000 people left the state, or about 41 people per day. This trend is putting a strain on local businesses, making it tough for employers to find skilled, educated workers. As part of our Appalachian Innovators Series, Roxy Todd has the story of one organization that is trying to tackle this problem in a new way.

Brian Blauser / Mountain Stage

 

On this week's encore broadcast of Mountain Stage, West Virginia super pickers Johnny Staats & Robert Shafer return with a new self-released record in tow titled Music from the Mountains, featuring this upbeat performance titled "El Cumbanchero." 

On The Legislature Today, host Andrea Lannom chats with West Virginia Commissioner of Agriculture Kent Leonhardt on the role agriculture plays in diversifying the state’s economy. We also hear the latest on the debate over Public Employees Insurance Agency issues.

Pa. Trail Initiative Could Provide Roadmap for Some Struggling W.Va. Towns

Feb 7, 2018
The West Newton, Pa., rail trail.
Photo courtesy of The Trail Town Program

There’s a national storyline that’s told about parts of West Virginia and Pennsylvania. It goes something like this: As the steel and coal industries fade, small towns are dying out. Young people move away because there’s a lack of jobs.

But for the past 20 years, some entrepreneurs have quietly been working on a different narrative -- one that harnesses the region’s natural beauty to build the economy. Their slow climb is starting to bear real fruit.

Capitol Dome, Capitol, Legislature
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

West Virginia officials say weaker results in January have caused state tax collections for the first seven months of the fiscal year to lag 1 percent behind original estimates.

needles
Mary Meehan / Ohio Valley ReSource

A program that offers free needles to people who use IV drugs could be coming to Beckley, as a way to help combat the opioid epidemic and prevent the outbreak of diseases like HIV and Hepatitis. The announcement was made at a community forum on Tuesday.  Several solutions to combating these issues were discussed, including increasing the number of police officers in Beckley.


Dollar Photo Club

The Justice Department is weighing whether to retry a West Virginia coal boss on charges of campaign finance fraud. A mistrial was declared Friday after the jury spent more than five hours deliberating the fate of 58-year-old James Lewis Laurita, of Morgantown. 

WVPB/ Janet Kunicki

Gwynn Guilford is a reporter for Quartz, a business news site. She specializes in writing about the economy. Guilford spent 10 months researching Appalachia’s economy for an article called “The 100-year capitalist experiment that keeps Appalachia poor, sick, and stuck on coal”. Guilford dug into the history of the region’s economic ties to the coal industry, and the long-term effects this relationship has had on the people who live and are determined to stay in Appalachia.

West Virginia Public Broadcasting reporter Roxy Todd spoke with Guilford about her report.


Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Updated: February 8, 2018 at 9:34 a.m.

 

Conversations focused on the insurance provider for public employees continued Wednesday in the West Virginia House of Delegates. The chamber adopted a resolution asking the PEIA Finance Board to hold off on proposed changes for the upcoming year, as House Democrats also pushed to discharge a bill to the floor to repeal the board -- only to see no action on the measure.

Adobe Stock

A new study of more than 6,000 first graders across the U.S. has found that the number of children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders is larger than previously thought. 

Over a six-year period, researchers collected data from more than 6,000 children in four communities in the Midwest, Rocky Mountain, Southeast and Pacific Southwest that were thought to represent an accurate sampling of the United States. There is no state-by-state specific data available.

Procter & Gamble Headquarters in Cincinnati, OH.
Derek Jensen / wikimedia Commons / user: Tysto

Officials from Procter and Gamble have announced additional products will be manufactured at the Martinsburg plant and, as a result, more employees will be needed.

Since construction began in 2015 for West Virginia’s Procter and Gamble plant, the organization estimated a need for 700 full-time employees to be hired by 2019.

Adobe Stock

New research by the Chartis Center for Rural Health has found that current and pending federal health policies are putting a bigger financial strain on already struggling rural hospitals. 

The report found the percentage of rural and critical access hospitals working at a negative operating margin has increased from 40 to 44 percent. 

Jason Walker, one of the Cedar Creek residents who have accused Dynamic Energy of contamining their water, poses near a creek from which he draws water to flush his toliets.
Molly Born / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

In May 2016, a jury found that a coal company owned by then-candidate for governor, Jim Justice, wasn’t responsible for contaminating the water wells of several Wyoming County residents. Still, an order requiring the firm to provide temporary fresh water stayed in place, and the water kept coming -- until recently, when it abruptly stopped. 

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, in May 2016, a jury found that a coal company owned by then-candidate for governor Jim Justice wasn’t responsible for contaminating the water wells of several Wyoming County residents. Still, an order requiring the firm to provide temporary fresh water stayed in place, and the water kept coming -- until recently, when it abruptly stopped. Molly Born has the story.

On The Legislature Today, host Andrea Lannom chats with two senators who sit on the Senate Judiciary Committee – Sen. Mark Maynard, R-Wayne, and Sen. Mike Romano, D-Harrison. We explore a handful of issues with these two lawmakers. Also in this episode, we spotlight an entrepreneurial agribusiness – growing lavender on barren strip mines.

Deer
David J. Phillip / Associated Press

The West Virginia House has voted to make it a crime to waste game by leaving carcasses or just taking trophies such as heads, claws or feathers.

The bill, passed 56-39 on Monday, would set fines ranging from $500 to $2,500 for big game, meaning deer, bear, boars and turkeys. Hunting and fishing licenses would be suspended for five years.

West Virginia House of Delegates, January 2018.
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

West Virginia's House has voted to let nursing aides give various prescription medications to patients at nursing homes.

Supporters of the bill, approved 55-44 on Tuesday, say the certified nurse aides would have to be trained every two years, work under the direction of a registered nurse, couldn't give opioids and other drugs listed as having high potential for abuse and could give injections only with pre-filled insulin.

Huntington Police Department

West Virginia's attorney general is calling for 150 more state troopers and 50 more investigators to help stem the flow of illegal drugs fueling the state's addiction crisis.

Attorney General Patrick Morrisey says a full overnight shift on the state's highways is important to a law-enforcement effort that's gotten "short shrift" on resources.

Pexels

Tickets have gone on sale for the Second Annual WV Craft Brew Festival in April intended to showcase West Virginia's growing craft beer sector at the state fairgrounds outside Lewisburg.

State Fair CEO Kelly Collins says 65 state craft brews were featured at last year's festival along with music and food.

AllVoices.com

Authorities say a coal miner has been killed at an underground mine in northern West Virginia.

The West Virginia Office of Miners' Health, Safety and Training says the incident occurred shortly before 4 a.m. Tuesday at Wolf Run Mining LLC's Sentinel mine in Barbour County.

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