By Jonathan Williams
Times West Virginian
Legislatively speaking, 2012 was a big year in West Virginia.
The state passed landmark mine safety reform in the wake of reports from the Upper Big Branch mine disaster and became the first state in the nation to pre-fund its retirement obligations, cleaning up the last large source of debt on the books.
The upcoming year promises to be just as challenging, if not more so. Lawmakers say the national economic downturn has finally made it to West Virginia and the state faces potentially difficult decisions in areas like education, the budget and infrastructure maintenance.
Still, Marion County’s representatives are optimistic that they’ll be able to find solutions to the challenges facing the state during the 2013 legislative session.
“We’re not afraid to make the tough decisions and try to move West Virginia forward,” said House of Delegates Majority Whip Mike Caputo, “and I hope to see more of that.”