West Virginia Courtesy Patrol

On The Legislature Today, Republican Legislative leaders have expressed no intention to increase funding for the state's Public Employee's Health Insurance Agency, the healthcare coverage for government employees. That means potential increases in premiums and costs for those covered under the plan.

Dept. of Administration Sec. John Myers and PEIA Director Ted Cheatham discuss the funding for PEIA.

Ed Evans
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia Courtesy Patrol is a state funded roadside assistance service. But as members in the House continue to look for places to cut to balance the 2018 budget, delegates have set their sights on the program’s $5 million budget.

The courtesy patrol has been around for almost 20 years. It’s a non-profit of the Citizens Conservation Corp through a contract with the West Virginia Division of Highways.To-date, the patrol has received over 3 million calls and employs nearly 100 people.

At the legislature today, the vote tally board in the house turns bright red as lawmakers vote against eliminating West Virginia’s Courtesy Patrol roadside assistance program.  Forest-grown ginseng is said to be as valuable as the wild grown roots and it could be a valuable industry for West Virginia as well.  And we’ll talk with U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin about the benefits of the Opioid Antagonist Act to treat drug overdoses on The Legislature Today.

Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The Courtesy Patrol is a free roadside assistance service offered to those traveling through West Virginia. The program is within the Division of Tourism, as the patrol often helps visitors as they travel. It has a budget of four million dollars. In the House Wednesday, Delegates considered a senate passed bill that transfers the patrol to the Division of Highways, but allows Tourism to keep the money for state marketing campaigns. But the debate took a turn, as Republicans debated whether the courtesy patrol should even exist.

West Virginia Citizens Conservation Corps

The West Virginia Courtesy Patrol's longtime operator has been awarded a new one-year contract.

Citizens Conservation Corps of West Virginia was one of two bidders for the contract. The other was IncidentClear, which operates service patrols in several other states.