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Editorials

Tough Job

It is unfortunate that West Virginia state school Superintendent Steve Paine is retiring under the circumstances he outlined in a surprise announcement last week. Paine explained he is leaving because “a member of my family is facing a health crisis and I want to be fully present for my ...

Compromise

Regarding an important bill in the West Virginia Legislature, both Republican and Democrat lawmakers deserve plaudits for making their branch of government work as the nation’s founders intended. That is to say, without partisanship being the key to how issues are decided. A measure that ...

Boos & Applause

Applause to the Randolph County Commission approving funding this week for this year’s Hooked on Fishing Not on Drugs event. Commissioners unanimously voted to award HOFNOD $4,500 in funding from the county hotel/motel tax in addition to the $500 previously given to the organization from the ...

Betrayal

Educators who betray the trust placed in them by victimizing children sexually should never be employed again in schools — anywhere. One might think that would go without saying, but it does not. Too often, school employees convicted of sex-related crimes involving children find jobs in ...

Safeguards

Children are the top priority in the minds of many West Virginians. Some legislators wonder whether they are a high enough priority in state government, however. During a press conference Monday in Charleston, a bipartisan group of lawmakers suggested state government needs to do more to ...

Corruption

Surely West Virginians understand by now that firm, consistent enforcement of ethics rules for public officials is required in our state. Our long, sordid recent history of corruption makes that clear. Yet enforcement of the rules has not been consistent. Take the case of former state lottery ...

School Calendar

Members of the West Virginia House of Delegates voted this week to continue giving county boards of education flexibility on when to open and close schools each year. A bill that would have mandated most schools open no earlier than Sept. 1 and close no later than June 7 was defeated — but ...

Something to Hide?

Once again, some legislators are trying to reduce West Virginians’ access to information about government, business activities that affect us and even matters that could affect our personal finances. Why? State law requires publication in newspapers of legal notices regarding certain ...

Nightmare’s End?

It may be that an end is coming to part of the saga of military veterans dying under suspicious circumstances at the government hospital in Clarksburg. Good. Justice needs to be done in the case. But once that occurs, a more important — in the long term — process needs to begin. Though ...

Overcrowded

West Virginia legislators are being urged to reconsider laws regarding multiple criminal justice issues, in the interests of fairness — and reducing the state’s jail and prison population. That factor does need to be addressed. In large measure because of the drug abuse epidemic, the ...

Social Studies

Let us hope social studies curriculum does not become the third rail of education reform in West Virginia. There are clear needs for improvement. It would not be surprising if state school officials decide to back away from changes in requirements for high school social studies classes. ...

History

Throughout the world this week, a grim 75th anniversary was being observed. It was on Jan. 27, 1945 that troops from the Soviet Union entered the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in Poland, as they were forcing the German army back to its homeland. Let us hope that in every high school ...

Epidemic

For decades, two of the major obstacles in the way of saving lives by reducing tobacco consumption were that many people began smoking before the health risks were well known — and that tobacco is a perfectly legal product. But we have known for many years that nicotine is harmful. And ...

Right to Brag

Gov. Jim Justice is absolutely justified in bragging about our state’s economy. “This is something all West Virginians should be proud of,” he commented recently. As the governor pointed out, 2019 was “our best year of job numbers in West Virginia in more than a decade.” Go just ...

Boos & Applause

Applause to organizers and participants in the Martin Luther King Jr. birthday celebrations that took place throughout our region this week. At only the age of 39 King created a peaceful movement more than 50 years ago that changed America. It is appropriate and gratifying that residents ...

Dollar Signs

Why bother with an economic impact study on legalization of marijuana for recreational use in West Virginia? Beyond any reasonable doubt, such action would have an enormous impact on the state’s economy. As Delegate Shawn Fluharty, D-Ohio, put it this week, recreational marijuana is the ...

Elections

Elections in West Virginia are far less likely to be affected by fraud, whether it be by individuals or another country’s computer hackers, than was the case three years ago. Yet registering to vote and casting ballots is easier than ever. How is that possible? Two words: Mac Warner. ...

Trial

No doubt West Virginia’s U.S. senators, Republican Shelley Moore Capito and Democrat Joe Manchin, understood when they took office that they would be making critically important decisions, not just for our state but also for the nation, even the world, as a whole. Neither may have imagined ...

Teachers

West Virginians are blessed with thousands of truly great, dedicated school teachers. Many are so concerned with doing their best for our children and grandchildren that they dig into their own pockets to buy classroom supplies and supplemental education materials. That is very common. A bill ...

Flexibility

For most of West Virginia’s history, state officials kept a tight leash on local government bodies’ taxation powers. Then, a few years ago, came the municipal home rule “experiment.” It was sold as a “pilot program” — but there can be no doubt it will be permanent. One could ...