Government

Eric Householder
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia Department of Commerce gave the House and Senate Finance committees a presentation Monday morning to explore the state's competitiveness in attracting businesses.

The Commerce department also asked for a significant increase in its funding. However, that request collided with the reality of the state’s dire budget situation.

Two Boone County public school employees are suing because they say their paycheck deductions didn't properly go toward paying for requested supplemental retirement and supplemental insurance coverage.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports that a lawsuit was filed recently in Boone Circuit Court against the Boone school board, the school system's current and former superintendents and Stephen Green, the system's director and coordinator of support services.

Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Members of the Senate Select Committee on Tax Reform have approved their bill to restructure the state's tax code. 

The committee substitute for Senate Bill 335 was passed out of the committee Monday morning, the first step in its process to completion.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On West Virginia Morning, Dave Mistich reports from McDowell County where Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont held a town hall meeting last night to focus on rural America and from the statehouse, Ashton Marra reports on the work of the Senate’s Select Committee on Tax Reform. 

That’s on West Virginia Morning from West Virginia Public Broadcasting – telling West Virginia’s story. 

 

AP

West Virginia lawmakers are weighing whether to stop requiring state registration of nearly 27,000 storage tanks that can hold up to 210 barrels of brine water and crude oil produced in drilling for oil and natural gas.

At a House hearing Monday, a dozen oil and gas producers say their tanks contain harmless organic materials far from water system intakes, unlike the massive 2014 spill from a chemical tank that shut down the Charleston area's water supply for nine days. They say that they already comply with other similar regulations.

Anthony Jenkins
West Virginia State University

West Virginia State University is inaugurating Anthony L. Jenkins as its 11th president this week.

The ceremony will begin at 1 p.m. Friday in Ferrell Hall. A ceremonial tree planting will be held at about 3:30 p.m., and a reception in honor of Jenkins and celebrating the university's 126th anniversary will follow at the James C. Wilson University Union.

F. Brian Ferguson / The Charleston Gazette-Mail

Despite hailing from Vermont, former Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders attempted to shine a light on poverty in middle America this weekend with a stop in West Virginia. Sanders held a town hall in McDowell County for an MSNBC taping of “All In with Chris Hayes.”  

Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Editor's Note: This bill was revised by the Senate Select Committee on Tax Reform Monday, March 13. The revisions are explained in a new story on this website. 

Over the weekend, members of the Senate’s Select Committee on Tax Reform were presented with the latest version of a bill to overhaul West Virginia’s tax structure.

This is the third version of the legislation the 7 member committee has seen, but they’ve yet to take a vote on the measure. That vote, however, expected to come Monday.

Patricia Rucker
Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

A bill to prohibit any Common Core-based education standards from being taught in West Virginia classrooms was taken up in the Senate’s Education committee Saturday. The standards have been debated for years at the statehouse and now lawmakers are looking at legislation that specifies what can be taught.

PunchingJudy / Flickr

Ohio County sheriff's deputies are soon going to start carrying antidotes for opioid overdoses.

WTRF-TV reports that the Ohio County commission on Tuesday announced their approval for deputies to carry Naloxone, which reverses the symptoms of an opioid overdose.

Pipeline ready for construction.
Seth Perlman / Associated Press

West Virginia residents were divided during the final state public hearing on the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline, which would carry natural gas down the center of West Virginia for 195 miles.

Several urged state permit approvals for the project and its jobs. Some others at the Thursday hearing warned of damage from construction, erosion and the aerial herbicide spraying along the right of way that would continue perpetually.

classroom
Arria Belli / Wikimedia Commons

A Nicholas County judge has declined to immediately stop the controversial plan to consolidate five Nicholas County public schools into two schools that share a single campus following a flood last year.

Judge James Rowe on Thursday denied a preliminary injunction that had been requested by supporters of rebuilding Richwood's flood-damaged schools in the Richwood area instead of consolidating them into a single campus near Summersville.

Haleybutlerhs / wikimedia Commons

Mohawk Industries Inc. says it is closing a wood flooring manufacturing plant in southern West Virginia, idling 111 workers.

The plant at the Buck Harless Wood Products Industrial Park in Holden will close by May 7 and its operations will be moved to a recently upgraded facility in Melbourne, Arkansas.

Bernie Sanders
David Becker / AP Photo

Former presidential candidate and Vermont U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders is coming to the coal country of southern West Virginia for a Town Hall meeting about the needs of rural Americans.

Sanders will speak Sunday afternoon at Mount View High School in the city of Welch. The event is being hosted by MSNBC, which plans to broadcast it later, calling it "an unscripted, no-holds-barred conversation" with people from McDowell County about the issues facing them and communities like theirs.

Amy Summers
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Members of the House’s Judiciary Committee are considering a bill that its sponsors hope will curb West Virginia’s nursing shortage.

House Bill 2522 would enter West Virginia into an agreement with other states to allow nurses to practice across state lines without having to get multiple licenses. The compact would include both registered nurses, or RNs, and licensed practical nurses, or LPNs, who packed the committee room Friday as members debated the bill.

Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Tensions were high Friday in the Senate as a motion to move a bill to the chamber’s Finance Committee turned into a debate over the procedures Senators with years of experience say are being ignored by some members of the majority party. 

Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

A bipartisan group of Senators voted to block a repeal of the state's requirement that all adults wear helmets while driving a motorcycle.

The repeal was amended into Senate Bill 173 during the committee process, a bill that would allow drivers to use autocycles, three-wheeled, fully enclosed vehicles, and would exempt drivers from having to obtain a motorcycle license. 

Perry Bennet / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Democrats in the House of Delegates Thursday attempted to change the scheduling classification of marijuana so it could be prescribed by doctors.

House Bill 2526 focuses on adding drugs to the state’s scheduling system, a classification of both prescription and illicit drugs. These classifications are referred to as Schedule I, II, IV, and V.

Cathy Justice
Daniel Walker / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

First Lady Cathy Justice spoke at her first solo event Wednesday since her husband’s election. The First Lady helped recognize International Women’s Day at the Capitol, kicking off Women’s History Month.

Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The Senate’s Workforce Committee has advanced a bill to limit the powers of cities and towns.

Senate Bill 399 prevents local governments from enacting ordinances or local policies that impose requirements on employers when it comes to employee wages and benefits. Among other things, the bill would prevent a city or town from making minimum wage higher than the state’s.

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