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Delegate Steve Westfall donates special session pay to Jackson County Libraries

Staff report

Jackson Newspapers

RAVENSWOOD, W.Va. — Delegate Steve Westfall (R-Jackson) has donated his pay from the WV Legislature’s recent special session to the Ravenswood and Ripley branches of the Jackson County Public Library.

Westfall presented checks for the total amount of his special session pay to Jackson County Library Board President Jenny Scholl and Interim Library Director Angela Howard. The funds will be split equally between the Ravenswood and Ripley branches.

“Republicans have said the recent special session was not necessary, since the Legislature passed a balanced budget during the regular session,” Delegate Westfall said. “Unfortunately, the Governor decided to veto that budget, and then wasted a great deal of time during the special session trying to get us to approve a tax-increase plan that was not supported by the majority of the Legislature.

“We couldn’t even legally work on a budget during the first half of the special session, because the Governor refused to put that item on the proclamation calling the Legislature into session,” Westfall said. “I’ve worked hard to make sure the budget preserves vital programs in our district, and I want to make sure the compensation I received for that work goes to benefit the citizens I serve.”

In addition to the budget, lawmakers passed seven other bills that shore up funding for the State Road Fund, help volunteer fire departments cover their Workers Compensation premiums, improve the ability of physician assistants to care for patients in the state, and other bills that boost the state’s health care system.

“One bill I was proud to vote for was House Bill 117, which implemented reforms at the state Health Care Authority that will help Jackson General Hospital expand care for patients, something that will greatly benefit residents in our area,” Westfall said.

“The roads bill we passed this session will also help us fix the potholes on I-77 and improve many of the secondary roads that run throughout Jackson County,” Westfall said. “This will also help put many of our citizens to work and provide jobs across the county and state.”

The Legislature adjourned its special session June 26.

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