Sat, 16 Feb 2019 16:03:53 GMT
Federal authorities have launched a criminal investigation into the Mountain Valley Pipeline in Virginia. The natural gas pipeline's parent company said in recent corporate filings with the SEC that it has been informed by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Virginia of a criminal investigation. EQM Midstream Partners says in filings that the pipeline joint venture had received a grand jury subpoena for documents Monday. The scope of the inquiry is unclear. A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's office did not immediately return a request for comment. An EQM spokeswoman says the company is complying with the subpoena. Last month, two local attorneys called for a federal investigation into whether pipeline crews violated laws by continuing construction on the 300-mile (483-kilometer) pipeline after a permit suspension.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 23:34:29 GMT
SB 451 – comprehensive education reform – is now back in the Senate, and the chamber is expected next week to consider the massive bill as amended by the House of Delegates. In this reporter roundtable, host Suzanne Higgins speaks with fellow statehouse reporters on the evolution of SB 451, and we explore other issues moving through the legislative process.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 23:17:35 GMT
West Virginia Public Broadcasting's latest addition to its network of radio transmitters has a long history of serving North Central West Virginia. Alderson Broaddus University student reporter Lauren McMillen, a sophomore mass communications major from Pittsburgh, tells the story of WQAB, 91.3 FM.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 22:57:30 GMT
See a recipe for salt rising bread at the bottom of this page. Salt Rising bread has a long history in Appalachia. Typically, people outside of the region have never heard of it. The bread often brings to mind a variety of distinctive scents and grandmothers tending to a time-intensive dough in a wood-heated kitchen.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 21:41:41 GMT
Most Americans typically wear clothes made in factories overseas. The same goes for fabrics in homes, such as potholders, rugs and blankets. But it has not always been this way.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 20:57:44 GMT
Democrats in the U.S. House are continuing their focus on climate change, this week shifting from its environmental to its economic impact and looking to Appalachia for next steps to aid communities with fossil fuel-based economies. On Thursday, members of the Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee heard testimony on how struggling coal communities are working to transition to more efficient, greener industries that can still provide the region with an economic base. “Investing in the economic revitalization of the communities that have been extraction based…must be front and center in the shaping of policies addressing climate change,” Brandon Dennison told the subcommittee. Dennison is the CEO of West Virginia-based Coalfield Development Corporation, an organization that retrains workers who have lost jobs in coal’s decline and incubates new business initiatives in Appalachia, but Dennison said retraining programs like his that are already in place are not enough because
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 20:56:47 GMT
The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources and West Virginia University are launching a pilot project to address substance use in Berkeley and Jefferson counties.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 20:53:11 GMT
When West Virginia House of Delegates member Eric Porterfield, R-Mercer, called the LGBT community “the modern-day version of the Ku Klux Klan” in an interview with a Charleston Gazette-Mail reporter last week, it drew condemnation not just in the state, but nationwide. But Porterfield, in fact, joined a long legacy of right-wing evangelicals who have conflated legal protections for lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender people with white supremacy and domestic terrorism. The Southern Baptist Convention in 2012 resolved that “homosexual rights activists” had “misappropriated the rhetoric of the Civil Rights Movement” in advocating for marriage equality and other legal protections. Bryan Fischer, former director of issues analysis for the American Family Association, has compared LGBT people to Nazis numerous times, arguing in a 2010 column that “homosexuality gave us Adolph [sic] Hitler.” And Tony Perkins, president of the Christian conservative lobbying group the Family Research
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 20:49:25 GMT
Fewer residents of Appalachia will have health insurance under the Affordable Care Act in 2019 than the year before. Enrollment numbers are down throughout the region, as they are nationwide, and some advocates say they aren’t surprised. In 11 of the 13 Appalachian states that enroll residents through the federal HealthCare.gov website (Maryland and New York administer their own ACA marketplaces), only Mississippi saw a rise in enrollment numbers. West Virginia and Virginia saw the largest declines. In West Virginia, some 22,600 residents signed up for or renewed health care policies under the ACA, as compared with about 27,400 for 2018, a 17.5 percent drop. In 2017, 34,045 West Virginians were enrolled. Of the 39 states that use HealthCare.gov for enrollment, the only that experienced a steeper decline was Virginia – but that was expected. As allowed for under the Affordable Care Act , Virginia expanded its Medicaid program in 2018, reducing the number of people in need of ACA
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 20:30:02 GMT
Arch Coal Inc. says it plans to open a longwall mine in northcentral West Virginia and employ nearly 600 employees when it's fully operational.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 19:43:19 GMT
This week on Inside Appalachia, we’ll hear from Appalachians who have a knack for making things with their hands -- people who make the essentials of life in the old ways. “And when I sit down at one of those looms and I start creating a piece of cloth, I feel connected to the place of my ancestors, the people who have come before,” said weaver Jane Gilchrest.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 19:21:41 GMT
Updated at 6:15 p.m. ET Calling it "a great thing to do," President Trump declared a national emergency on Friday in order to help finance a long-promised wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. It's a highly unusual move from an unconventional president. In circuitous remarks in the Rose Garden, Trump said he was declaring an emergency because of "an invasion of our country with drugs, with human traffickers, with all types of criminals and gangs." The move came a day after Congress approved a spending bill giving Trump around $1.3 billion in border security funding, far short of the $5.7 billion he had called for. Trump signed the bill Friday afternoon, averting another government shutdown until at least October. Invoking emergency powers frees up additional funding. Legal challenges and pushback even from some within his own party await Trump in the next phase of the ongoing national political battle over border security and immigration policy — cementing the issues at the forefront of his
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 15:12:21 GMT
West Virginia’s small but active hip-hop community is striving to normalize hip-hop as an art form. The YWCA in Wheeling recently held an event called Hip Hop: A Black Tie Affair to help bring legitimacy to the community in the Northern Panhandle.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 13:00:00 GMT
On this West Virginia Moring, Mountain Artworks is a studio in Mercer County that houses the unique flair, personality, passion and dreams of metal sculptor Michael “Mike” Sizemore. His work often consists of recycled materials. For example, he might take an old glass ashtray, surround it with metal shaped like flower petals to create a beautiful, yard ornament suncatcher. Inside Appalachia host Jessica Lilly found out that while his art earns him money, he’s also chosen to keep an unusual, but practical, day job.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 04:14:41 GMT
Mountain Artworks is a studio in Mercer County that houses the unique flair, personality, passion, and dreams of metal sculptor Michael “Mike” Sizemore. Mike has a particular fondness for copper, but he uses all sorts of materials in his work, even recycled glass ashtrays. Like many artists, Mike keeps a day job to pay the bills.
Fri, 15 Feb 2019 00:24:11 GMT
The comprehensive education reform bill passed out of the House of Delegates on a vote of 71 to 29. We’ll recap the day’s action on the bill, and host Suzanne Higgins talks with Randall Reid-Smith, Curator of the West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History.
Thu, 14 Feb 2019 18:33:11 GMT
Updated on Thursday, Feb. 14, 2019 at 6:54 p.m. The West Virginia House of Delegates has passed its version of a long, sweeping and controversial education reform bill. The proposal, which calls for teacher and school service pay raises, but also other ideas opposed by public educators such as charter schools, is a stripped-down version of the measure the Senate passed last week.
Thu, 14 Feb 2019 17:11:58 GMT
This story was updated at 4:15 p.m. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Thursday it will move forward with a series of actions to regulate toxic fluorinated chemicals, including proposing drinking water limits by the end of this year. But environment and public health advocates say that timeline is unacceptable.
Thu, 14 Feb 2019 17:08:18 GMT
Economic development leaders from the Ohio Valley’s coal communities used a Congressional hearing on climate change Tuesday to say that their communities must be central to conversations about climate solutions. Testifying at a House Natural Resources subcommittee hearing on climate change and energy transitions, Peter Hille, president of the Berea, Kentucky-based Mountain Association for Community Economic Development told lawmakers a “just transition” means acknowledging the important role played by the fossil fuel-based economies of Appalachia. “The justice we call for in this transition is based on the reality that these communities and communities like ours literally fueled the growth of this great nation,” he said. “And they sacrificed lives, families, health, water, prosperity.” As Congressional Democrats and others in Washington consider how to help coal-dependent communities, Hille said, they must be willing to provide new investment to these regions. “Even as they gave us the
Thu, 14 Feb 2019 16:53:04 GMT
West Virginia teachers and school administrators who are opposed to an education bill held a candlelight vigil outside the state Capitol on Wednesday night while the House of Delegates met in a marathon debate. The House had more than 30 amendments to the complex bill on its agenda.