Unger blames Senate for continuing work stoppage

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Sen. John Unger, D-Berkeley, said Thursday schools should be open across West Virginia, laying all the blame on the State Senate.

Teachers and school service personnel were set to end a work stoppage that began last Thursday after union representatives and Gov. Jim Justice agreed to set up a workforce to fix the Public Employees Insurance Agency and offer a five percent raise.

Sen. John Unger, D-Berkeley

The pay raise bill passed in the House with a single dissenting vote, but the Senate adjourned before taking the bill up.

Unger said they should have remained in session until the work was complete.

“It’s not like it was a surprise to anybody,” Unger said. “It’s been discussed quite a bit and we didn’t do it.”

Unger said as a member of the Senate he shares some blame, but added he was in favor of staying late to pass the bill.

Teachers have said they won’t go back until the raise is put in writing.

Senate leaders have indicated they would rather see that money go into fixing PEIA.

If the bill doesn’t pass today Unger said the people of West Virginia need to show up in Charleston.

“I call on all West Virginians, every bit of them, to just come in and regain their government.”

He said people need to storm the Capitol and take it over without using violence.

Unger said that without a competitive public sector they can never hope to compete in the private sector.

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