Justice Announces Legislation to Combat Drug Epidemic


Bills will create drug treatment centers, toughen penalties for drug dealers, and open a pathway to expungement

CHARLESTON, WV — Today, Governor Jim Justice put forward legislation to stop West Virginia’s drug crisis. The bills aim to crackdown on out-of-state drug dealers and give the people of West Virginia a shot at making a full recovery to re-enter the workforce. 

VIDEO ADDRESS: Governor Justice details his plan to solve West Virginia’s Drug epidemic.​

​“A critical part of growing jobs in West Virginia is beating back the drug epidemic,” said Governor Jim Justice. “Our people are suffering because there aren’t enough treatment options in our state; I will fix that. We’ve got to get our people well so they can get back into the workforce and contribute. It’s real simple, West Virginia won’t see a jobs explosion until we have a drug-free workforce, and my plan will make that a reality.”

The Governor’s Plan To Fight West Virginia’s Drug Epidemic

Increase Drug Trafficking Minimum Penalties (S.B. 297/H.B. 2668)

  • The Justice backed legislation  increases the minimum criminal penalty for transportation of a Schedule I or II narcotic into West Virginia from one year to three years.

Second Chance for Employment Act (S.B. 366/H.B. 2657)

  • The proposed bill makes nonviolent felony offenders eligible for a preliminary expungement order five years after serving a term of incarceration or supervision. It will allow West Virginians who’ve earned a second chance to enter the workforce. 
  • If the individual continues to live without committing a crime for five years following the preliminary order, he or she is eligible for a permanent order of expungement of records.  

5% Licensing Fee To  Fund Treatment Options In West Virginia

  • ​The Governor’s legislation will establish a 5% licensing fee that will be applied to the successful bidders of state road projects. This money will go directly toward treating addiction.
  • Justice wants to create long-term treatment centers in Charleston, the Northern Panhandle, and the Eastern Panhandle.

Contact Information

Grant Herring — Grant.W.Herring@wv.gov


Office of the Governor
State Capitol, 1900 Kanawha Blvd. E
Charleston, WV 25305

Office Phone:
304.558.2000 or 1.888.438.2731

Governor's Mansion:

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Banner Images Courtesy of the West Virginia Department of Commerce

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