August 9, 2019 by Kelly Allen
West Virginia’s Municipalities Have the Authority to Expand Worker Benefits

Everyone gets sick, but not everyone gets paid time off work to get better. Nearly half of West Virginia’s private sector workers, 46 percent, lacks paid sick leave, and people of color and low-income workers are the least likely to have access to this benefit. This means that those who have the most to lose by…

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August 6, 2019 by Ted Boettner
Medicaid Expansion Has Saved 435 Lives in West Virginia

A new study from the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) finds that 435 lives were saved since West Virginia expanded Medicaid in 2014. The study compares death rates of the near-elderly - those between the ages of 55 and 64 - in states that have and have not expanded Medicaid and finds that in…

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July 23, 2019 by Sean O'Leary
Education Special Session Turns Focus to Corporate Welfare

The special session that once was focused on education reform saw a bill introduced and passed out of committee to help bail out a struggling coal power plant. HB 207 would exempt "merchant power plants" from the state's business and occupation tax. The Pleasants Power station in Pleasants County would be the only power plant…

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July 17, 2019 by Ted Boettner
Impact of Medicaid Work Reporting Requirements by County in West Virginia

This past legislative session, the House introduced House Bill 3136 that directed the WV DHHR to apply for a Section 1115 waiver to implement Medicaid work reporting requirements on all non-elderly adults in enrolled in the program. If enacted, and approved from the federal government (CMS), it would force thousands of people who do not…

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July 16, 2019 by Sean O'Leary
Is West Virginia the 45th Best State for Business?

Last week, the WV Chamber of Commerce celebrated West Virginia's improving business climate, according to the CNBC Best States for Business rankings. According to the Chamber, West Virginia's improvement from 48th to 45th is proof that the Chamber's preferred policies are working. CNBC's rankings is one of several in a long line of business climate…

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July 15, 2019 by Ted Boettner
It’s Not Too Late to Fix Our Future

A recent article in Vox by David Roberts highlights how a coal mining bust in Wyoming is resulting in "vulture capitalism" as investors buy up bankrupt coal mines while coal executives receive large bonuses and the communities in Wyoming struggle with thousands of laid off workers, lost pensions, environmental degradation, and an undiversified economy. This…

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June 27, 2019 by Sean O'Leary
Be Careful Not to Confuse Volatility With Growth

Governor Justice once again drew attention to a strong quarter of personal income growth for the state, with WV having the highest 2019Q1 personal income growth in the country. But, as was the case the last time the governor highlighted this particular statistic, there is more to the story than one quarter's worth of data…

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June 24, 2019 by Kelly Allen
Indiana’s Medicaid Waiver Isn’t a Model for Other States

As state legislatures and officials around the country consider applying for Medicaid demonstration projects, or waivers, Indiana’s “Healthy Indiana Program 2.0” (HIP 2.0) is often touted as a more efficient way of delivering Medicaid services. But is it? When Indiana adopted the Medicaid expansion in 2015, it did so through a Section 1115 waiver which…

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