Tuesday November 7, 2017

WV revenues match expenditures, keeping the budget in balance

West Virginia state government’s budget looks decidedly better four months into the new fiscal year than at the same time the two previous years. Figures...

Monday November 6, 2017

CDC quantifies extent of fentanyl-related overdose deaths

We have heard plenty of reports from first responders and medical experts about how fentanyl and fentanyl-related drugs have worsened the opioid epidemic, and now...

Friday November 3, 2017

An old sailor tells his story

When I asked retired Navy Lt. Jim Downing about the ship’s bell, his eyes lit up.  “The bell on a ship is used for everything,...

Thursday November 2, 2017

WV starts limited drug testing of welfare applicants

West Virginia has started drug testing some welfare recipients.  The state Department of Health and Human Resources started last week implementing a three-year pilot program...

Wednesday November 1, 2017

Inmate escape highlights correctional officer problem

Last Wednesday, Todd Boyes escaped from the South Central Regional Jail in Charleston. Well, “escaped” is a bit strong.  Don’t think of Shawshank Redemption or...

Tuesday October 31, 2017

Why Halloween throws me for a loop

I try to keep it simple for Halloween—answer the door and deliver the goods.  Anything else usually causes me trouble. My most memorable Halloween came...

Monday October 30, 2017

The power of incumbency

We hear a lot about a deeply divided country and fissures within the two main parties. The division among the Democrats was evident in the...

Friday October 27, 2017

West Virginia’s road bond gets thumbs up from Moody’s

The bond rating agencies remained mum prior to the road bond election because they did not want to be seen as influencing the outcome. But...

Thursday October 26, 2017

Charleston couple at White House for drug announcement

Cece Brown was sitting on the couch in her Charleston home looking at a picture of her son, Ryan, who had died from a heroin...

Wednesday October 25, 2017

Governor Justice bonds with Republican legislative leaders

During a press conference last week following a two-day special session, Governor Jim Justice jokingly referred to Senate President Mitch Carmichael and House Speaker Tim...

Tuesday October 24, 2017

West Virginia gets positive rating from the Tax Foundation

The non-partisan Tax Foundation has released its annual State Business Tax Climate Index and West Virginia continues the recent trend of a favorable ranking. The...

Monday October 23, 2017

Lincoln told us how to honor the war dead

As I sat to write this commentary, CNN was having a panel discussion on the controversy over what Presidents have said to families who have...

Friday October 20, 2017

President Mirta Martin’s circuitous route to Fairmont State University

The Fairmont State University Board of Governors has made an intriguing hire for president.  Dr. Mirta (pronounced MEER-tah) Martin will assume her responsibilities at the...

Thursday October 19, 2017

Justice is feeling good after bond, legislative victories

Governor Jim Justice was asked repeatedly during his campaign in support of the road bond whether the jobs created would go to West Virginians. Each...

Wednesday October 18, 2017

Trump’s gambit on Obamacare

Donald Trump has frequently touted his deal-making prowess. He has called deals his art form.  In a December 29, 2014 tweet he said, “Other people...

Tuesday October 17, 2017

WV ventures into potatoes and cow breeding with little success

When Walt Helmick was State Agriculture Commissioner he wanted to encourage the expansion of the agri-food industry.  Helmick argued the state was underachieving in food...

Monday October 16, 2017

Nicholas County needs professional help

Nicholas County has had a rough go of it over the last couple of years. The decline of the coal industry led to shutdowns and...

Friday October 13, 2017

Morrisey on thin ice with consumer protection fund distribution

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey held a news conference with the State Police earlier this month where he announced his office was transferring $1...

Thursday October 12, 2017

Manchin, Jenkins, Morrisey jockey for position on campaign fundraising

You know a political race is going to be hot when the candidates are pushing out spin on their fundraising months before the election.  That’s...

Wednesday October 11, 2017

The war on coal is over… sort of

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has announced that his agency is beginning the formal process to repeal the Clean Power Plan.  “The war on coal is...

Latest Newscasts