coalvalleynews.com

Legislature is speeding up

From the desk of Delegate Jeff Eldridge

February 18, 2014

The Legislature is speeding up now that we’ve passed the mid-way point. We are still feeling the effects of the water crisis caused by the chemical leak that happened last month and here at the Legislature it’s our first priority to assure the people of West Virginia that something like this will never happen again.


The House held a public hearing last week to listen to the people’s concerns so we can better represent their needs. West Virginia citizens that spoke at the public hearing said that they want legislation with no loopholes or exclusions. They said that the cause of the chemical leak was due to non-enforcement of current laws and in order to make legislation effective, it needs to enforced. People who spoke said they felt failed. As your Legislature it is our responsibility to re-establish the trust of the people because our first priority has always been and always will be the people of West Virginia.


Senate Bill 373, the bill spoke of at the public hearing, is now in the House Health and Human Resources Committee, a committee I am a member of. After passage, the bill will then be moved to the House Judiciary Committee. The bill would regulate aboveground storage tanks that aren’t currently regulated by other rules and have the possibility of contaminate a water resource. The Health and Human Resources Committee heard testimonials from Jeff McIntyre, the President and Chief Executive Officer of West Virginia Water, Tom Curtis from American Water Works, Letitia Tierney the Commissioner of the Bureau of Public Health and State Health Officer, Ryan Palmer the Commissioner of West Virginia Public Service Commission, Amy Swann the Executive Director of the West Virginia Rural Water Association. I understand how important this bill is to the protection of our people and our water and I will keep you updated on the bills status on the weeks ahead.


I will continue to keep you updated on my role in the West Virginia House of Delegates. As always, I would like to encourage you to contact me with questions and concerns as your participation in the legislative process is important. You can contact me by e-mail at jeff.eldridge@wvhouse.gov. Also, you can contact me via phone, at (304) 340-3113.