News

Updated at 4:29 p.m. ET

Republican members of Congress disrupted the closed-door proceedings of the House impeachment inquiry, preventing a Pentagon official from giving her testimony.

Arguing that the inquiry's interviews should not be held behind closed doors, GOP lawmakers entered the secure area in the Capitol Wednesday where witnesses are typically questioned.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Last week, the family of a Navy veteran John Hallman filed a notice of a wrongful death suit against the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs. Hallman’s death is being investigated as one in a string of suspicious deaths at the Louis A. Johnson V-A Medical Center in Clarksburg. Senior reporter Dave Mistich spoke with Tony O’Dell -- the attorney representing Hallman’s family and others in the case. 

Updated at 1:57 p.m. ET

Facing increased questions over whether Facebook can be trusted to protect its users, CEO Mark Zuckerberg told lawmakers Wednesday that the company will pull out of its controversial digital currency project if U.S. regulators don't approve it.

Zuckerberg said the social network would leave the nonprofit body governing the new currency, Libra, if other members decided to go ahead without regulatory approval.

Updated 3:08 p.m. ET

President Trump lashed out about the House impeachment inquiry in a tweet Tuesday morning, calling it "a lynching," a choice of words that drew sharp rebukes from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle.

In his post, Trump wrote, "So some day, if a Democrat becomes President and the Republicans win the House, even by a tiny margin, they can impeach the President, without due process or fairness or any legal rights. All Republicans must remember what they are witnessing here - a lynching. But we will WIN!"

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, foster families are in high demand in many states. West Virginia has the highest rate in the country for the number of children who are removed from their homes and put into state care. There are a lot of families who are stepping up to take them in, but many say they feel unprepared for the looming task of taking care of the children who are placed in their homes. Roxy Todd reports.

Adobe Stock

A group of state leaders working on a three-year plan to address substance use in West Virginia are traveling the state to share what they’ve come up with, and they say they need help deciding which issues to address first, and how. 

Former President Jimmy Carter suffered a "minor pelvic fracture" after falling down in his home in Plains, Ga., Monday night, the Carter Center says. It's the second time Carter has been hurt in a fall this month; he got a black eye from a fall days after he turned 95 on Oct. 1.

Carter "has been admitted to Phoebe Sumter Medical Center for observation and treatment of a minor pelvic fracture," the Carter Center said in an announcement Tuesday. The center adds, "He is in good spirits and is looking forward to recovering at home."

How Should Opioid Lawsuit Money Be Spent? Ohio Valley Has No Shortage Of Needs

Oct 21, 2019
Clients waiting for addiction treatment services in Berkeley County, W.Va.
Rebecca Kiger / Ohio Valley ReSource file photo

At a town hall event in Logan, Ohio, Kelly Taulbee walks through the steps of an encounter with someone experiencing an opioid overdose. She's training a group to use NARCAN, the opioid reversal medication. She pulled out the small applicator and demonstrated how easy it is to spray the medication in someone’s nose.

As the director of nursing for the Hocking County health department, she understands the importance of this life-saving medicine.

“It is simple. It is safe. It is effective,” she said.

But she also knows that NARCAN is just one of many tools needed to respond to a crisis that has grown to affect nearly every aspect of life in this rural corner of southern Ohio.

Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

 

A Polish family-owned cosmetics business has decided to place its United States flagship in West Virginia. The family hopes to open a manufacturing facility in Martinsburg in five years.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, last-minute settlement negotiations in Ohio are proceeding in a closely watched case against some companies that made or sold opioid painkillers.

It’s the first hearing of the National Prescription Opiate Litigation, which consolidated thousands of lawsuits brought by state, county and local governments. The stakes are enormous, especially for the Ohio Valley, which has some of the worst rates of addiction and overdose deaths.

As the Ohio Valley ReSource’s Aaron Payne reports, the hardest-hit communities have no shortage of needs, and plenty of ideas for how money won from a judgement or settlement should be used.

Updated at 9:53 a.m. ET

President Trump announced that he's dropping his plan to host next year's G-7 meeting of the leaders of the world's biggest economies at his Miami-area golf club.

In a series of late-night tweets on Saturday, Trump blamed the reversal on what he described as "Media & Democrat Crazed and Irrational Hostility," following bipartisan claims that he's exploiting his presidency for personal profit.

An encampment near the Coal River in the winter of 2019 in Kanawha County, W.Va.
Courtesy of Stan Smith

A pastor in St. Albans has been helping residents of a local homeless encampment called Tent City get back on their feet. But not everyone in the town approves of the work he’s doing.

“They hate to move every night. They hate to bother people,” Stan Smith, a pastor in St. Albans, W.Va., said as he drove around the outskirts of town, pointing out the tucked-away thickets where homeless people have set up camps.

Brittany Patterson / WVPB

Adversity isn’t new to Appalachia. We’ve faced boom and bust cycles for over a century. This episode of Inside Appalachia looks at some of those struggles and various efforts to curtail them. We’ll hear stories about West Virginia’s overwhelmed foster care system, to questions about what is killing off apple trees. And we’ll explore the research behind job creation programs ⁠— many of which are supported by federal grants. Do they bring long-term economic impact to Appalachia? 


Pianist Bob Thompson returns with 27th edition of Joy to the World, featuring guest-vocalist Jane Monheit.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, in rural Appalachia, if you face homelessness, it can be challenging to find resources to help get back on your feet.

A pastor in St. Albans, Kanawha County, saw that a homeless encampment consisting of about 10 tents in his community was being pushed out. People were being told they had to leave. So, he decided to help.

But not everyone in the town approves of the work he’s doing.

Independent producer Kyle Vass spent some time this summer looking into what’s been happening with the “tent city.”

Charleston Police Car
charlestonpolice.org

Updated Nov. 6, 2019: The Charleston Police Department's Professional Standards Division determined that two officers, Joshua Mena and Carlie McCoy, had followed the department’s policy appropriately, and after almost a week of paid administrative leave the men were allowed to return to their jobs on Friday, Oct. 25. 

Original Story:

Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Gov. Jim Justice announced Thursday he has appointed John “J.R.” Pitsenbarger to the West Virginia Senate to represent the 11th district.

Attorney: Lawsuit Planned Over VA Hospital Death In West Virginia

Oct 17, 2019
Louis A. Johnson VA Medical Center
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs / http://www.clarksburg.va.gov/

An attorney representing the family of a patient who died at a Veterans Affairs hospital in West Virginia says he plans to sue over what he believes is the man's suspicious death from a wrongful insulin injection.

Flickr / davidwilson1949

A legislative audit says West Virginia's Division of Labor cited more than 500 violations of a jobs act intended to give local laborers the majority of roles on state-funded public works projects.

Updated at 11:10 a.m. ET

Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, a Baltimore attorney and civil rights advocate who served in Maryland's legislature before representing the state in the U.S. House, where he took on a lead role in investigating President Trump, has died. He was 68.

Cummings, the head of the powerful House Committee on Oversight and Reform, died early Thursday at Johns Hopkins Hospital from complications related to longstanding health challenges, according to The Associated Press.

Billionaire Governor's Family Farms Get Subsidy

Oct 17, 2019
Office of Gov. Jim Justice

A farming business owned by the family of West Virginia's billionaire governor has received $125,000 in soybean and corn subsidies, the maximum allowed from a federal program meant to help American farmers through the U.S. trade war with China.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, Republican candidates in West Virginia’s 2020 congressional races appear to be significantly out-fundraising Democrats, according to third quarter campaign finance reports. Dave Mistich has more.

Brian Blauser/ Mountain Stage

Songwriter's Hall of Fame member and twice-grammy nominated artist Beth Nielsen Chapman performs on this week's episode of Mountain Stage with guest-host Kathy Mattea.

Courtesy photo

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ben Salango says he's divesting from the parent company of The Charleston Gazette-Mail ahead of the 2020 election.

Carolyn Kaster / AP Photo

Updated Wednesday, October 16, 2019 at 5:50 p.m.

Republican candidates in West Virginia’s 2020 congressional races appear to be significantly out raising Democrats, according to third quarter campaign finance reports.

Pipe ready for construction.
Seth Perlman / Associated Press

Federal regulators are putting a temporary stop to most construction on the Mountain Valley Pipeline amid litigation over key project permits.

The U.S. Small Business Administration says small businesses in three West Virginia counties are eligible for economic injury disaster loans as a result of excessive rain and flooding earlier this year.

The agency said Brooke, Hancock and Ohio counties in the Northern Panhandle are eligible because they’re contiguous to one or more primary counties in Ohio. The loans are available to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and private nonprofit organizations.

State leaders — including Gov. Jim Justice — gathered Tuesday afternoon outside the Putnam County Career and Technical Center to unveil a new initiative that combines free substance abuse treatment with free job training.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, Dr. Steven Paine serves as West Virginia’s 31st state superintendent.

When asked what he’s most excited about in education spheres throughout the state, he says there are promising indications of improved student academic achievement, and he points to the state’s impressive graduation rates. He also highlights the career and technical education programs throughout the state. 

Education reporter Glynis Board spoke with Paine in depth about these and other issues. We hear some of that conversation.

West Virginia Department of Education

Steven Paine, Ed.D., currently serves as West Virginia’s state superintendent for the second time in his career. He was the 25th state superintendent of schools from 2005 – 2011 and took up the post again in March of 2017 to become the 31st superintendent. He’s now also considered the longest serving state superintendent of schools in the country.

He recently sat down with West Virginia Public Broadcasting to discuss the state of education in the Mountain State.

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