CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin will deliver his fourth State of the State Address Wednesday night at the state capitol. The speech will be the highlight of the first day of the 60-day regular legislative session.

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Gov. Tomblin will deliver his fourth State of the State Address Wednesday night.

Members of the state Senate and House of Delegates will gavel in the session at noon with floor sessions. They will then break until the governor’s speech that will begin at shortly after 7 p.m.

Tomblin administration Communications Director Amy Shuler Goodwin said the speech will look at the accomplishments of the last year including the new education reform law and the cracker plant developments in Wood County. She said the speech will also look ahead.

“He will be speaking directly about the state of the state, our financial outlook and his vision to improve education, growing a skilled workforce and caring for our seniors and veterans,” she said.

Tomblin, who has spent 40 years at the capitol in various roles including a record number of years as state Senate president, enjoys this time of year according to Goodwin.

“This is the governor’s wheelhouse,” she said. “He still believes in the same principles–being a good steward of the people’s money and making tough decisions when he needs too.”

Tomblin may have to say the word “no” a lot during the next two months with tight budget times including lagging revenue collections and increased costs for Medicaid.

“Times are tight. It’s something all agencies are dealing with,” Goodwin said. “You’ll hear the governor talk about the state of the state, our financial outlook, and what we all can do to help out.”

MetroNews Talkline with Hoppy Kercheval will air live from Upper Rotunda at the state capitol Wednesday morning beginning at 10:06.


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  • Gilbert Gnarley

    His address ought to make for interesting viewing, that is, until "Jeopardy" comes on.

    Maybe a pre-address tailgate is called for in the Capitol Complex.....bologna served inside and outside.

  • Sam Interdonato

    What is on the agenda for WVA state teachers? State teachers need a pay raise.
    I retired in 2013. What is the plan for retired teachers? What is the state of PEIA Insurance for the next several years?
    There needs to be more pressure put on parents to send their children to school. We need an attendance policy so bad.
    Don't punish teachers when children don't come or work in school.
    School evaluations and teacher evaluations should not be connected to student test scores. Make parents and students responsible.

  • Employee

    FYI bookman, due to budget cuts by the governor I did take a pay cut last year.

    • The bookman

      Would you care to explain that to the rest of us? My understanding was that the budget cuts were handled through attrition, not cuts to salaries. If I am misinformed, please set me straight!

  • rick

    No raises this year....we are looking at 20 per cent cuts for the rest of this fiscal year.

  • State Employee

    Will this be the year we finally get a raise?

    • workerbee

      no. But rest assured that all the cronies and family members will get pay increases. But workers like you & i will remain at the FPL

  • wvguy

    Tomblin, who has spent 40 years at the capitol in various roles including a record number of years as state Senate president. Career politicians. NUFF SAID!!!!!!!!!

  • Myron

    Looking forward to the announcement of teacher raises.

    • Jason412

      The WV teacher median income is 45,000. That's 3x the federal poverty guide line. Over 3x what a full time minimum wage employee makes. A lot of people get by on substantially, as in 1/3, less money.

      If teachers are struggling to get by, why not consider taking on another job for the summer? That would put more money in your bank account then any raise the state would be willing to give up any time.

    • stophating

      I hope you are correct, but suspect what you are going to here is the formation of a committee to study the possibility of giving raises three or four years from now......

      • bulldog95

        Maybe you can a raise when you learn the difference in here and hear. What school do you teach at? I want to no so I dont send my kid their.

        • Justice

          Know not No Bulldog.

      • The bookman

        I love how 3 of the 5 comments are about state employee guys are too much!

        • Employee

          Hey bookman, you try to live off of what we make. Most of the WV people, obviously you included, have no idea how low the majority of state employees get paid.

          • workerbee

            Bkman, Thank you for that. What you say is true.
            Now I have to get back to work and do my job which is unappreciated by most.

          • The bookman


            I'm no fan of government, and you point to the very reason! There is no incentive to perform, other than pride in a job well done. Search any post of mine and you'll not find me running down teachers or state employees. If Mrs Bowling isn't worth $185,000 a year than she should be fired. If she is then she should be retained. But there is no accountability in the system to achieve either end...she retains the position as long as or until the Tomblin administration sees fit, without judgement as to effectiveness...that does not happen in the private sector. So when you hear people like me scream privatize there is a reason. It is why Paul Mattox says there's room in the DOH budget to give raises. Spend the money more wisely on the resources we have. Be more efficient with the money we already spend. That is a management issue. Giving raises to everyone doesn't lead to more efficient government, just reinforces inefficient behavior.

          • workerbee

            joe, she has done nothing to improve DHHR or our working conditions. As a matter of fact, she has only increased our responsibilities. She sends out e-mails from her ivory tower as if all is well and seems to have no clue what is like to do this job. With the ACA, our caseloads have increased significantly, our duties have increased but no incentive to continue the State's low error rate has been provided or even mentioned. That low error rate is what gained the State that federal funds that created the rainy day fund. We stay here because we like what we do but they continue asking us to give more and more but we haven't received a true salary increase in more than 5 years. Most of us like what we do and don't want to leave civil service but they need to be reasonable. Can you live off $24k a year? Doubt it. For a family of 4 that is poverty level. And with private employment there is no guarantee that your job is going to be there tomorrow. As I said, we are the ones who keep the state going and we are the ones who might be able to bring the federal incentives to a screeching halt. Then WV will be the equivalent of Detroit.

          • Joe

            Worker is not that complicated. The state offered a salary commensurate with job responsibilities and Ms Bowling accepted the offer. This is the same scenario when you accepted your position.

            If you feel you are worth more, then go out in the world and get what your worth. Otherwise, I truly do not understand what your point was.

          • workerbee

            There are no funds to give to us workers who actually do the work but Tomblin saw fit to bring Karen Bowling at a salary of $185,000, an $80 or 90,000 increase from the last sec'y of DHHR. We workers are the reason the State has gained federal funds/incentives -because of the low error rate.
            And NO we were not mandated to take a State job but in WV it is a safer bet than working for a private employer.
            Please explain the why Bowling who wrecked Raleigh General Hospital AND Mtn. State College is entitled to such a huge salary.
            We workers are the ones who keep thsi state runnig NOT poitcians and certainly not people like Bowling.

          • Joe

            Hey employee, ever stopped to think how PEIA kept premiums the same the past two years? It is made possible from money from all other non-state workers.

            Ever stop to think where that millions of dollars that were transferred from the general revenue fund into the state employee and teacher pension to ensure a 7percent rate of return? You got it .... from those non-state employees who had to take the losses to their own retirement accounts.

            How selfish and self-centered this crew is!

          • Aaron

            If the pay is so low, why not go elsewhere? Could it be that the overall compensation is better than you can get in the private sector?

            Not many of us start with 15 paid vacation days, 18 sick days, a minimum of 12 paid holidays, a Cadillac health care plan that cost a small percentage of our earnings AND a defined retirement plant that allows employees to retire as early as their 55th birthday.

            I'm curious employee, as a state employee, would you be willing to exchange any of that for a couple dollars more an hour?

          • The bookman

            Then improve your situation, but there is no money in the budget for across the board wages for teachers or state employees. Where have you been the last six months? Revenues are not meeting projections, we have a state law mandate to balance the budget, and somehow you and others expect a pay raise.

            Were you required to take a state job? Were salary and benefits not part of the discussion? Have you endured a pay cut or reduction in hours? Who takes a job at a given wage and then annually demands more inciting moral outrage over the stated agreed upon wage? I understand that state employees are not getting rich and have difficulty paying their bills, as many others do and have. But we don't have the money this year, and next year isn't looking good either.

        • stophating

          Love how you can count. Maybe that can qualify you for an award..... Decision made, you can now proudly say you are the recipient of a prestigious Richard Cranium award... Congrats.

          • Aaron

            While I recall confounding Dr. Hater with facts that dispelled every myth regarding teacher pay he put forth, I didn't realize I was given an award for my efforts.

            I graciously accept.

          • The bookman


            Missed part of a sentence. For clarity, I work all year, but work til May to pay my tax bill. Sorry, trying to get to work...looks like your still home though, unless you're one of the unlucky few, so far.

          • The bookman


            I pay my taxes, more than my fair share, and I have no employees. I have personally supported every levy and bond issue at the county level since I have been of voting age, and have actively campaigned for them. You see I am pragmatic about most things. Government must collect money to provide basic services to its citizenry in the form of taxes. I don't espouse shirking that responsibility, by anyone. You however have repeatedly called for more of the tax burdened to be shouldered by even fewer people all for your own selfish gain, so that you can receive a pay raise, any pay raise, for anyone who pays dues into the union you represent. So as I head out to work in the new year at this ungodly hour, 3:47 am, I do so knowing that the average American who pays taxes, less than half of us pay federal taxes, will work until May and know that folks like you who receive it in salary and benefits don't think I'm doing enough. And for that, I get your distinguished award, so named that you may slip it past the watchful moderator. You're a lobbyist with a singular mindset, get more money at any cost for my constituent group. You don't advocate for the state or country as a whole, only for your dues paying group. And as a result you don't like me or others on this MB for shining the light on you and calling it for what it is, self preservation. I can look in the mirror and know I'm doing my best for my family, my god, and my country without focussing on "self." Can you? Stop hating and start listening and maybe you can brush your teeth and comb your hair like the rest of us, eye to eye.

          • stophating


            I'll admit to having one goal.... Trying to pay my bills and save a little, as I'm sure I won't have a retirement when I make it to that point in twenty years.

            Are you willing to admit that your goal is for you to pay zero taxes and have your employees pay 40% taxes so you can be tax free. You are what is wrong with America, you've made just enough money that you are above paying your fair share as those you employ are paying it for you. This mentality is why the Republican Party may lose control of the US House- even though the Obama administration is disliked by many different factions for a variety of reasons. The working class is paying a disproportionate share of their income in taxes because tax policy isn't set by republicans nor democrats--it's set by the wealthy, every member of Congress has been bought and paid for by one special interest or another that has deep pockets and wants to conduct business tax free.

            Enjoy your wealth--and have a nice day, and the award is symbolic of your contributions to discussions on this board, but if you would like a physical image of the award--all you need to do is look in the mirror.

          • The bookman

            I'll ask Aaron if I can borrow the award from him since you awarded it to him as well...I'll display it proudly on my mantle since it comes from you! Unless of course there is no real award, as there is no real substance to your argument. Tell me! Did you come up with this phallic award on your own, or did you win one yourself at one time, therefore realizing your dream of holding one of these in your very hands? Just curious.

  • susanf1218

    Increased cost for Medicaid? Yeah, thanks EVER So Much, Governor! If you would have said "No" to the expansion, then we wouldn't have these increased costs!!

    • The bookman

      ACA has so many caveats that it would have been foolhardy to not proceed with the expansion... At least the Feds will have to pick up 93% of the costs for the first 8 years. Most of the conservative estimates show that the overall costs of the expansion to the states are less than not opting for the expansion early. You see, they got you one way or the other. It's what happens when you vote for something you haven't read!