In his first press conference as Speaker of the state House of Delegates, Speaker Tim Miley announced the intended formation of a new committee in his chamber, the committee on small business, entrepreneurship and economic development.
The committee will be separated from the one already in existence in the House which is focused on the energy industry and labor. Miley said this new committee is important because small businesses are the backbone of future economic growth in the state.
Chaired by Del. Doug Skaff of Kanawha County, Miley said his intention for the committee is to appoint delegates with personal experience as current or previous small business owners.
“I want people who have been there, in the trenches, with that experience on that committee,” he said.
“Those are the people who are there day in and day out when the rubber meets the road trying to determine how they can succeed, how they can employee their employees and how they can make a better life for themselves and their employees.”
Because a new committee can only be established during a legislative session, Miley has established a pre-emptive work group of the committee members. They will travel the state holding forums to discuss the future of small businesses with entrepreneurs.
In a statement released Wednesday evening, House Minority Leader Tim Armstead said it is time to make bold changes to encourage the creation of small businesses and entrepreneurs across the state.
"Job creators and entrepreneurs work hard to grow their businesses and employ hard-working West Virginians," Armstead said. "They have shared with us innovative and common sense solutions to the problems they face each day and we have worked hard to advance those solutions."
"We are confident that, if the Democrat leadership truly listens to those who are struggling each day to make their payroll, they will quickly learn of those very basic solutions that have worked successfully in neighboring states and across the country."