Week one of W.Va. Legislature brings changes

West Virginia senators and representatives returned to Charleston Wednesday as the West Virginia Legislature reconvened for the 1st Session of the 83rd Legislature.

At the Legislative Lookahead that took place last week, the legislators made it known that this will be a busy session, especially when it comes to trying to take care of the state’s budget.

Last fall marked an election year, which brought many new senators and representatives to serve the people of West Virginia this session.

Among those new faces includes the recently elected Gov. Jim Justice.

The other leadership positions include Tim Armstead, who will continue his role as Speaker of the House, and Mitch Carmichael, who will assume his new role as senate president. 

West Virginia Sen. Greg Boso discussed some of the potential key issues that could arise this legislative session.

“Jobs is going to be a big part of what we talk about this year,” Boso said, “so that we can get people in West Virginia back to work.”

Boso also discussed the drug epidemic, especially in the Huntington area.

A lot of that occurs because people don’t have hope,” Boso said, referring to opioid drug use in the Huntington area. He said the hope has been lost because “the jobs aren’t available to them.”

After discussing jobs, Boso commented on the new governor and said to him it seems that Justice is “really trying to improve the business climate of the state.”

Boso also mentioned resources for students to learn more about the legislative process.

The West Virginia Legislature website is one resource Boso said would have some useful tools for students to learn about the process.

Boso also said the West Virginia State Constitution is another important resource that outlines what the legislative process is and why the state has the system.

After reconvening on Wednesday, the legislature will be in session for 60 consecutive days.

Kylee Hurley can be contacted at [email protected]