- West Virginia
State’s budget tapping reserves
West Virginia lawmakers are ironing out kinks in an election-year budget that avoids tax hikes and gives public workers raises.
Legislative session shaped by chemical spill
With a midnight deadline looming, West Virginia lawmakers scrambled Saturday to give teachers raises, agree how to combat methamphetamine labs and impose a controversial abortion ban.
The 60-day lawmaking session has centered on a Jan. 9 chemical spill into the water supply that affected 300,000 people. But there was little late night drama during a 10 p.m. House of Delegates unanimous vote to send the bill to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin.
State Senate approves bill on minimum wage
The State Senate passed nearly 40 bills on third reading Friday. Among them were raising the minimum wage, and electronic toll collection for roads built after the Division of Highways’ six-year plan has lapsed.
Minimum wage will increase $1.75 in incremental stages over the next three years and will become $8.75 in 2017.
‘Take Me Home, Country Roads’ one of state’s official songs
Singer John Denver never called West Virginia home, but his 1970s hit “Take Me Home, Country Roads” is one of the state’s official songs.
Forty-three years after it first hit the airwaves with the words “Almost Heaven, West Virginia,” the Legislature approved a resolution Friday designating it as one of four state songs.
‘Pothole blitz’ to address road damage
Crews with the West Virginia Division of Highways are planning a multimillion-dollar effort to fix pothole damage across the state.
Tending to winter roads always leads to wear and tear, but successive heavy winter storms this year have taken a harsh toll on roads, officials said.
Attorney general ethics bill likely dead
A push to impose stricter conflict-of-interest standards on West Virginia’s attorney general has fizzled in the state Senate.
Judiciary Committee chairman Sen. Corey Palumbo, D-Kanawha, says there’s little interest in his committee to hear the bill, which targets Attorney General Patrick Morrisey.
Senate committee advances abortion bill
A bill to prohibit abortions later than 20 weeks after conception moved forward Thursday in the state Senate Judiciary Committee and will be heard on the full Senate floor later this week.
The bill bans abortions after 20 weeks except in cases when a doctor deems a patient at risk of serious physical impairment or death.
Committee: Slow minimum wage hike
Compromise negotiations between labor and industry resulted in a minimum-wage hike that achieves the same result — $8.75 per hour — but takes three years to get there instead of two, while decreasing the initial year’s earnings hourly increase by 50 cents.
That’s the thrust of the bill that passed out of the Senate Finance Committee Wednesday.
Coal firm to pay record fine for water pollution
One of the nation’s largest coal producers will pay a $27.5 million fine and spend $200 million to reduce illegal toxic discharges into hundreds of waterways across five Appalachian states, according to a proposed settlement Wednesday.
Committee approves 20-week abortion limit
Whether or not a bill that would ban abortion after 20 weeks of gestation is constitutional did not appear of to be the primary concern of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Resources on Tuesday, as they passed the bill out of committee with one amendment.
The bill proposes to protect unborn children capable of feeling pain.
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