Economy

Oil and Gas Industry
8:50 am
Thu December 18, 2014

After Living Next to Drilling Activity, 100 W.Va. Residents Sue Companies

Before/After screen capture of the Mark West Plant, a major mid-stream gas processing plant that's in the middle of construction in Doddridge County.
Credit WV Host Farms

Nuisance and negligence lawsuits have been filed this year throughout West Virginia related to horizontal drilling activities. Noise, air, and water pollution, traffic and debris are among complaints. It’s a new industrial world for many West Virginians living in the growing rural gas fields.  

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Mine Layoffs
8:41 am
Thu December 18, 2014

Mine Layoffs in McDowell County

Credit http://corporate.arcelormittal.com/

ArcelorMittal has laid off more than 50 workers at three coal mines in Southern West Virginia.

ArcelorMittal spokesman Bill Steers tells the Bluefield Daily Telegraph that the layoffs are necessary because of decreased demand for coal.

The layoffs affect 58 workers at the company's XMV, Concept and Extra Energy mines in McDowell County.

ArcelorMittal/Princeton general manager Greg Jessee tells the newspaper that coal mining in the U.S. has sharply declined in recent years.

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Oil and Gas Industry
1:45 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

New York Bans Fracking

Horizontal drilling pad at the Morgantown Industrial Park, where more horizontal drilling is slated for 2015.
Credit Northeast Natural Energy

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's administration will move to prohibit fracking in the state, citing unresolved health issues and dubious economic benefits of the widely used gas-drilling technique.

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Infrastructure
10:49 am
Wed December 17, 2014

Judge Denies Morgantown Heavy Truck Traffic-Limiting Ordinance

Credit Safe Streets Morgantown / via Facebook

A municipal ordinance to limit heavy traffic through the downtown district of Morgantown has been declared “unenforceable” in Kanawha Circuit Court.

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Oil and Gas Industry
8:45 am
Wed December 17, 2014

More Fracking Slated in Morgantown

Morgantown Industrial Park
Credit Northeast Natural Energy

Amid much controversy, two horizontal gas wells were drilled into the Marcellus shale rock formation in 2011 just barely outside of Morgantown. Now two more wells are slated to be drilled on the same pad in the summer of 2015, but the company, Charleston-based Northeast Natural Energy is teaming up this time with a host of researchers.

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Diamond Electric
3:28 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

Diamond Electric Moving Headquarters to West Virginia

Credit http://www.diamond-us.com/

Auto parts manufacturer Diamond Electric is relocating its U.S. headquarters from Michigan to West Virginia.

The move is expected to bring 10 to 15 jobs to West Virginia.

West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin announced the change at a news conference Monday.

The automotive ignition coil manufacturer will consolidate its main Michigan office with existing operations in Eleanor, located in Putnam County.

The Eleanor location first opened in 1997. It now features Diamond Electric's largest production facility, including 335 employees.

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Environment
4:24 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

Petition Asks W.Va. Govenor Not to Allow Drilling Under Ohio River

Ohio River

Govenor Earl Ray Tomblin received a petition with 3,820 signatures requesting he disallow horizontal drilling under the Ohio River.

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Wood Play Layoffs
11:07 am
Thu December 11, 2014

Hardwood Flooring Plant Announces Layoffs

Credit Haleybutlerhs / wikimedia Commons

The owner of a hardwood flooring plant in southern West Virginia says it's laying off 47 workers.

Unilin notified workers at its Mingo County facility that the layoffs are effective Jan. 1. The facility at the Buck Harless Wood Products Industrial Park employs 182 workers.

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Law & Order
3:35 pm
Wed December 10, 2014

House Releases Policy Paper on Coal Ash

Little Blue Run Coal Ash Impoundment

Today from Capitol Hill, the House Energy and Commerce Committee released a policy paper that addresses coal ash disposal.

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Economy
11:08 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Alpha Won't Lay Off 750 West Virginia Coal Miners

  About 750 Alpha Natural Resources workers at West Virginia coal mines will keep their jobs, despite layoff warnings this summer.

In a news release Monday, Alpha said operations will continue at eight mines in Logan, Mingo, Boone and Raleigh counties.

In July, Alpha warned 1,100 West Virginia workers at 11 mines of anticipated layoffs. The mines produced about 75 percent thermal coal for power generation, and 25 percent metallurgical coal for steel production.

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Appalachian Cuisine
2:10 am
Thu December 4, 2014

Vagabond Chef Returns Home to Wheeling

Matt and Katie Welsch, owners of the Vagabond Kitchen in downtown Wheeling.
Credit www.facebook.com/thevagabondkitchen

Chef Matt Welsch is a local boy who, after touring the country on a motorcycle (writing a travel-cuisine blog about being a vagabond chef), returned to his hometown and set up shop.


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Local Food Movement
7:36 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Local Food, Local Places Grants Awarded, Eight Appalachian Winners

Location for the proposed apple orchard on Vineyard Hill.
Credit Grow Ohio Valley

Eight Appalachian Communities are Winners in a Local Foods, Local Places Grant Competition.


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Economy
5:11 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Third W.Va. Coalfields Senate Panel Meeting Next Week

Credit www.mine-engineer.com

  A state Senate panel seeking to revitalize the struggling southern coalfields will meet next week in Princeton.

The group's third listening tour stop is set for Dec. 11 at 6 p.m. at the Fred Gilbert Activity Center in Mercer County.

The Southern Coalfields Organizing and Revitalizing the Economy initiative, or SCORE, aims to diversify southern West Virginia. The panel plans to make recommendations before the January legislative session.

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Public Health
12:16 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

40 Years Doing 'Whatever It Takes' for Abandoned Kids in Wheeling

Ashley (L) her mother Shawna Littell (R)(1996) found help at Youth Services System.
Credit Youth Services System

Organized in 1974 by local citizens, social workers, clergy, attorneys, and judges, Youth Services System's motto has been the same for 40 years, according to CEO John Moses: “Whatever it takes. The kid’s at the door now.”

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Carbon Regulations
4:15 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Colorado Skiers: Powder, Not Power Plants

Supporters made the announcement on the sidewalk in front of the Regional EPA building in Denver.
Credit http://www.snowridersinternational.org

As the ski season opens, more than 115 snow and mountain supporters across the country have signed letters in support of bold action by the Environmental Protection Agency to curb power plant emissions.

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Oil and Gas Industry
1:00 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Consol Energy Executive Pleads Guilty to Stealing Gas Royalties

Credit Brian Turner

A former Consol Energy executive has pleaded guilty to stealing $440,000 in gas royalties from the company by forging deed transfers so he could funnel the money into a fake company he ran out of a post office box.

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Infrastructure
1:46 am
Wed November 19, 2014

Morgantown Heavy Truck Traffic Ban Delayed

Credit Safe Streets Morgantown / https://www.facebook.com/SafeStreetsMorgantown

In a unanimous vote last night, Morgantown City Council decided to delay implementation of an ordinance that would ban certain truck traffic in the city’s downtown district.

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Government
1:30 am
Wed November 19, 2014

State Lawmakers Meet in Fayette Co. to Discuss Revitalizing Southern Coalfields

John David speaks at the second SCORE meeting in Fayette County.
Credit Jessica Lilly

The second meeting of the SCORE task force met in Fayette County Tuesday night.  SCORE, Southern Coalfields Organizing and Revitalizing the Economy, is an initiative aimed to give southern West Virginia much-needed opportunities to diversify the economy and strengthen communities.

Nothing was off the table as each person that chose to speak had two minutes at the podium.

Other areas of concern brought up by the community included:

  • drug abuse
  • aging population
  • disaster preparedness
  • quality child care
  • clean water

Suggestions from other speakers included:

  • renewable energy tax credits
  • selling water as a natural resource
  • funding water protection plans
  • resisting attempts to weaken environmental law
  • Ensuring the DEP is enforcing the laws


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Poverty
8:15 pm
Thu November 13, 2014

Parkersburg's Panhandlers Say Signs Calling Them Addicts Are Insulting and Defamatory

A month ago the city of Parkersburg posted signs around town asking the public not to give to panhandlers. But some people still do. And some panhandlers say the signs aren’t just ineffective. They’re insulting. Even defamatory.

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Government
5:36 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

Senate President: W.Va. Senate Coalfields Initiative Will Continue

Credit West Virginia Legislature

  Democratic Senate President Jeff Kessler says an initiative to revitalize the struggling southern coalfields will continue.

In a news release Wednesday, Kessler said a second listening tour stop is set for the evening of Nov. 18 in Oak Hill.

The Southern Coalfields Organizing and Revitalizing the Economy initiative, or SCORE, aims to diversify southern West Virginia. The panel plans to make recommendations before the January legislative session.

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