Government

Senator Shelley Moore Capito, along with other federal representatives, introduced legislation that would reauthorize the Appalachian Regional Commission. The announcement comes on the heels of a report evaluating the progress of the Commission after 50 years.

West Virginia State Police

West Virginia State Police have captured a Pennsylvania man who escaped from a state psychiatric hospital.

State police say 30-year-old Rocco Zuccaro of Burgettstown, Pennsylvania, was found late Wednesday night hiding in tall grass near a natural gas facility in the McWhorter area of Harrison County.

Courtesy Photo

A coalition of West Virginia groups is working to bring a presidential or vice presidential debate to the state’s capital city. 

The West Virginia Commission on Presidential Debates has spent the past six months putting together an application hundreds of pages in length detailing why Charleston is the perfect place for a 2016 debate.

Freedom Industries
AP

 Lawyers for businesses and people affected by a massive chemical spill last year say a settlement to fund community projects is no longer being considered.

In June 2014, lawyers for groups affected by the Freedom Industries spill proposed the money go toward projects benefitting the public, like health monitoring or more water testing.

Office of Governor Earl Ray Tomblin

Kanawha County will provide free appraisals of property damaged by a landslide at Yeager Airport.

Yeager says the County Commission has hired Jay Goldman and Associates to conduct the appraisals. Settlement offers will be made to residents based on the appraisals.

Dave Mistich / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Freedom Industries hosted a public meeting Tuesday night in a small room in the Charleston Civic Center to provide updates on the remediation of the site of the spill. Last January a coal-scrubbing chemical leaked from a 40,000 gallon storage tank next to the Elk River contaminated the drinking water of 300,000 West Virginians.  

Office of Governor Earl Ray Tomblin / Office of Governor Steve Beshear

  Some signature goodies are up for grabs in a friendly wager between the governors of West Virginia and Kentucky ahead of the Sweet 16 matchup between the states' two flagship universities.

West Virginia's Earl Ray Tomblin said Tuesday he's wagering a small basket of Mountain State favorites, including pepperoni rolls, while his Kentucky counterpart, Gov. Steve Beshear, is offering a selection of bourbons.

Office of the Governor

  Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin has signed next year's state budget after reducing about $11 million set aside for a variety of grants and programs.

The Democrat's vetoes Tuesday made it possible to take only about $15 million from state reserves in a difficult budget year. The budget passed by the Republican-led Legislature depended on about $23 million from the Rainy Day Fund.

Brianhayden1980 / wikimedia Commons

Former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship has pleaded not guilty to federal charges in a mine safety case.

Blankenship entered his plea on Tuesday at an arraignment hearing in U.S. District Court in Beckley. The hearing was based on a new, superseding indictment handed up earlier this month.

Tomwsulcer / wikimedia Commons

The South Charleston Public Library has gotten a welcome surprise from the state.

Roger Hughes with the state Treasurer's Office presented an unclaimed property check for $16,737 to library officials on Monday.

Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin has vetoed a provision in a spending bill that required him to sell bonds for two state park projects.

Tomblin used a line-item veto to remove the provision from the legislation. Lawmakers inserted the provision into the bill before passing it on March 14.

Dave Mistich / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A now-bankrupt chemical company has pleaded guilty to three pollution charges related to last year's spill that contaminated a West Virginia river.

Mark Welch, chief restructuring officer of Freedom Industries, entered the plea on behalf of the company Monday in federal court in Charleston.

Freedom faces a maximum $900,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled June 29.

U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito, Chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee’s Clean Air and Nuclear Safety Subcommittee, held a field hearing this week in Beckley, regarding the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed Clean Power Plan. The carbon pollution standards are the first of their kind and aim is to reduce carbon emissions 30 percent nationwide by reducing carbon pollution from power plants. Senator Capito held a hearing in southern West Virginia where tightening regulations might be felt most acutely.


Hope Pain Clinis
http://www.hopepaincenters.org/our-clinic-locations.html

A southern West Virginia pain clinic under investigation by the federal government has reopened four days after authorities conducted a raid.

Hope Pain Clinic manager Mark Radcliffe says the clinic in Beaver reopened to patients on Monday.

Media outlets report federal and state law enforcement officers removed boxes of files from the clinic on Thursday and turned away patients.

Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Both of West Virginia’s Senators, Democrat Joe Manchin and Republican Shelley Moore Capito, are co-sponsors of a piece of legislation that would rewrite the 40-year-old Toxic Substances Control Act. 

Flickr / davidwilson1949

In their first shot at leading the Legislature since the 1930s, Republicans considered ideas that Democrats hadn't given much play.

They suggested allowing charter schools, repealing Common Core educational standards, drug testing welfare recipients and introducing a right-to-work law.

West Virginia Division of Culture and History

Eighth graders from 18 schools in West Virginia are getting a second chance to compete in a state history tournament.

The play-in competition will be held Saturday at Buckhannon-Upshur Middle School.

Dave Mistich / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The public will learn next week about plans to clean up a chemical storage site on the Elk River that was the source of a public water crisis in West Virginia.

The Tuesday meeting in Charleston will include consultants from Freedom Industries and officials from the state Department of Environmental Protection. They'll explain plans under the department's voluntary industrial remediation program.

In a press release Friday, Governor Tomblin announced his veto of Senate Bill 347, the Firearms Act of 2015.

Martin Valent / West Virginia Legislative Photography

State Senate Minority Leader Jeff Kessler has filed pre-candidacy paperwork for an open governor's race.

The Marshall County Democrat changed the office he's seeking Thursday in the early paperwork from "undeclared" to "governor."

In a 2011 special election, Kessler placed fifth in the Democratic primary for governor.

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