CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — The legislature may have to provide more funding for COVID-19 relief especially if Congress does not pass another economic stimulus package.
Many have already voiced concerns about Gov. Jim Justice’s lack of consulting them over the initial one-point-two-five-billion in “Cares Act” money. State lawmakers may also have to provide more funding for tele-health, and broadband expansion for the same reason. But it’s likely the Republican majority may try to make some tax cuts, not increases.
“Well I think part of it is looking at spending. What are you spending money on today that you can cut back on? Obviously, we want to protect all of our critical services that we offer the citizens of West Virginia. But are there programs out there where the money is not being spent well, or not being accounted for? I think the answer is certainly yes,” said Former Del. Chris Stansbury, (R) Kanawha.
A recent poll of voters showed that most believe the opioid crisis was the state’s number one problem, but the poor conditions of the state’s secondary roads came in a close second.
“A couple counties in my district, the roads are just terrible. And I just tried to draw attention to just how bad the road problem is in the state,” said State Sen. Randy Smith, (R) Tucker.
Any thing on the Democrat’s agenda is going to be difficult to secure. Republicans have a super majority in both chambers now, with an 18-seat gain in the House and 3 more seats added in the Senate.
“As for how the Democratic stays relevant, many are urging the minority party to find common ground with Republicans on issues where they agree, including broadband expansion and criminal justice reform,” said Mark Curtis, 13 News Chief Political Reporter.