Annual West Virginia Legislative Session opens Wednesday

West Virginia

CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — The Special Session is over, so the legislature now looks ahead to this year’s regular session which begins Wednesday.

Certainly, as we’ve been reporting, economic development projects will be a major focus this year, but there are plenty of other priorities. Governor Jim Justice has requested a 5% pay raise for all state employees, including school teachers and staff. All of them would receive a one-time annual 2.5% bonus.

“If you’ve gone to the grocery store or anywhere else lately, you know how the prices have gone up on everything. I would also like to see a raise or a [Cost of Living Adjustment] for our retirees. I don’t like for them to be left out.” said Del. Phil Diserio, (D-Brooke).

“I want to go in and do some additional targeted raises, in some areas where we need people like [Child Protective Services] workers. Our CPS workers are woefully underpaid. and several others, state police would be another to go in and do an additional raise on them,” said Del. Gary Howell.

From the field of education, there is bi-artisan support for hiring a teacher’s aide for every first and second-grade classroom in the state.

And there is more!

“Always looking at roads and infrastructure in the State of West Virginia. That’s important to my district and certainly to the entire state. And also try to be forward-thinking. How can we stop the flow of people from out of our state,” said Del. John Williams, (D-Monongalia).

“Well, I have four things that I am going to try to do something about. Which is to fix the internet. Trying to do something about cutting business and personal taxes. I want to make sure there’s money for schools. I want to make sure there is money for roads, infrastructure, broadband, water and sewer. Those kind of projects,” said Del. Mick Bates, (R-Raleigh).

Both chambers of the West Virginia Legislature are scheduled to gavel into session at noon Wednesday, and then the governor will deliver his annual state of the state address at 7 p.m.

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