July 16, 2024 by Kelly Allen
West Virginia Matches Up Well With Neighbors on Tax Rates, Falls Short on Funding Schools and Child Care

Much of the hype around personal income tax cuts has centered on West Virginia’s competitiveness to attract people and businesses to the state. Because most interstate migration happens among border states, it’s worth taking a look at West Virginia’s competitiveness compared to our neighboring states. The data shows that while West Virginia’s tax environment is…

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July 10, 2024 by Rhonda Rogombe
Black Infant and Maternal Health Must Be Prioritized in the Mountain State

Infant and maternal health outcomes are just two of many factors indicating the overall health of West Virginia. They create a narrative about connections with health and communal care and indicate areas for improvement. Over the past several years, the data around infant and maternal mortality have lagged in West Virginia, making it difficult to…

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June 18, 2024 by WVCBP
Court Watch: A Second Chance

A contextual note from the WVCBP: The most important criminal law bill of the 2024 West Virginia legislative session got little attention from lawmakers. Senate Bill 736, the Second Look Sentencing Act, would have given judges the authority to review long sentences in cases where a person has served at least 10 years for an…

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May 30, 2024 by Kelly Allen
Special Session Leaves Critical Budget Questions Unanswered

Earlier this month, state lawmakers met in Charleston for a special session mostly to allocate funding for budget needs that were shorted when they passed the state budget in March. Of 15 bills passed, 12 dealt with appropriations and state spending, with lawmakers continuing a troubling trend of using one-time surplus funds to pay for…

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May 22, 2024 by Sara Whitaker
Introducing Court Watch

Over the last two years, West Virginians have learned about horrifying conditions inside our state jails and prisons. Thanks to the courage and diligence of people closest to these problems, we have seen past the walls. Residents served rotten or undercooked food. Cells with “broken toilets, busted windows, no hot water, exposed electrical wires and…

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May 16, 2024 by Kelly Allen, Sean O'Leary
Hope Scholarship-driven Enrollment Decline has Major Impacts on Public Schools and Students

Nearly 250,000 West Virginia children receive their education in the public school system. High-quality public education helps make the American dream possible—at its best, ensuring a strong educational foundation for all children across race, ethnicity, disability status, gender, religion, and socioeconomic background. In addition to public schools educating the vast majority of children in our…

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May 8, 2024 by Rhonda Rogombe
SNAP Restrictions Fail to Connect Vulnerable Residents to Work While Straining Charitable Food Providers

In July 2023, West Virginia reimplemented pre-pandemic time limits for some adults receiving food assistance via the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). The time limits apply to adults between 18 and 52 (up to 54 in September 2024) without a documented disability and without children under 18 in the household, often referred to as "able-bodied…

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May 7, 2024 by Sean O'Leary
Reducing Poverty Can Improve Educational Outcomes

One in four children in West Virginia lived in poverty in 2022, the second highest rate of any state in the country. With the state pursuing education reform focused on funneling taxpayer funding out of public schools and into the private sector via the Hope Scholarship, West Virginia's voucher program which is growing more expensive…

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May 2, 2024 by Rhonda Rogombe
Lessons Learned from the Medicaid Unwinding 

The post-pandemic era Medicaid unwinding has been an unprecedented undertaking for Medicaid enrollees, the state agency that oversees Medicaid, health care providers, and health care advocates. The unwinding process highlighted long-standing patterns within the program and offered a wealth of data to the public, providing necessary insights that can help make health care more accessible…

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