Governor Tomblin making no effort to find new PSC commissioner

The Charleston Gazette picked up on the story of the missing PSC Commissioner today. There has been a vacancy on the three-member Public Service Commission for the past eight months and no word from the Governor’s office about when he plans to appoint a new commissioner. Gazette reporter Andrew Brown filed a Freedom of Information […]

Public Water Supply Study Commission quietly sinks? (UPDATED)

Update, 8/4/15: I just received notice that the Public Water Supply Study Commission is in fact meeting tomorrow from 10am to noon in the Governor’s Cabinet & Conference Room (Suite 10) at the Capitol. Momentum seems to have faded from some of the state efforts started last year in response to the water crisis. The […]

More promises, but no data, on clean up of Freedom site

On Tuesday evening, Freedom Industries and the DEP held a public meeting to discuss the remediation of the Freedom Industries site. But there didn’t seem to be too much real information to share. Freedom appears to be trying to minimize the cost of the cleanup because there is not enough money in Freedom’s bankruptcy estate […]

2015 Legislative Wrap-Up

On Saturday, the legislature passed Senate Bill 423. This bill weakened the Aboveground Storage Tank Act passed a year ago – reducing the number of regulated tanks from nearly 50,000 to 12,000; reducing the frequency of inspections; and allowing even more tanks to be exempted if they show compliance with existing DEP permits. This rollback […]

What difference does one vote make?

Good news and bad news from the legislature yesterday. The good news is that the proposal to reclassify the Kanawha River as a drinking water source was passed by the Senate Judiciary Committee without any harmful amendments. The bad news is that the House Judiciary Committee narrowly passed Senate Bill 423, the bill to gut […]

Too much regulation? Really? Then how could this happen?

The theme of this year’s Republican leadership at the WV Legislature seems to be that WV business is “overregulated.”  Jonathan Mattise of the AP filed this story last Friday.  There isn’t much evidence in this piece that current WV regulation is even minimally effective. A few towns over from the tank farm where Freedom Industries […]

One year out. Who is serious about fixing the water crisis?

The one year anniversary of the January 9, 2014 disaster has passed.  Back on January 14, 2014, I posted a piece about the crisis over on The Power Line about the situation.  I wrote in that post how our state’s leaders are not really serious about creating safe communities in our state in which people […]

PSC investigation of WV American Water on hold – again

The PSC’s investigation of WV American Water is once again on hold due to a shortage of Commissioners. Wednesday was Commissioner McKinney’s last day; McKinney had announced his retirement earlier in December. McKinney’s term had actually expired in 2011, but state law had allowed him to continue serving because the Governor did not appoint anyone […]

Comments on DEP draft rules due Friday

Earlier this month, DEP released an additional section of its draft aboveground storage tank rule. It looks like DEP is repeating one of the mistakes of its strip mining regulatory program. The new section of the draft provides rules for how much money companies with aboveground storage tanks have to post as a bond to […]

CDC visits West Virginia, but no medical monitoring yet

The Gazette had a couple articles last week (here and here) on the failure to come up with an adequate medical monitoring program for the population impacted by the Freedom spill. In July, the Gazette reported that CDC had promised to “send a team to West Virginia within the next two months to help state […]