West Virginia Week in Review - January 9, 2021

1/9/2021

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Gov. Justice: West Virginia leading nation in multiple vaccine distribution metrics
On Friday, Gov. Jim Justice reported that West Virginia continues to lead the nation in the rate of COVID-19 vaccine distribution and administration. As of Friday, 77,156 of 109,440 first doses delivered in West Virginia to date have been administered; a rate of 70.50 percent.
Gov. Justice once again highlighted the CDC’s COVID-19 Vaccination Tracker, noting that West Virginia is now the top-ranked state in the entire nation for vaccine distribution on a per capita basis.

The Governor also highlighted Bloomberg.com’s vaccine tracker, which also includes data on each state’s vaccination rate, and noted that, adjusting for West Virginia’s latest numbers of doses distributed to the state versus doses administered, West Virginia leads the nation in this category as well, notching a 70.5 percent vaccination rate. North Dakota is the next closest state at 62.1 percent.
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Gov. Justice announces vaccination clinics for West Virginians age 80 and older through operation “Save Our Wisdom”
On Wednesday, Gov. Justice announced that a series of 10 vaccination clinics would be held this week, at seven locations across the state, for members of the general public age 80 and older. These clinics are in addition to other vaccination events already underway or scheduled through local health departments across the state.

These clinics are part of Gov. Justice’s renewed focus on providing COVID-19 vaccines to West Virginia’s most vulnerable citizens. Wednesday, the Governor announced that the effort to vaccinate all individuals age 80 and older, as well as all Pre-K-12 school faculty and staff age 50 and older, has been officially named operation “Save Our Wisdom.”
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Gov. Justice announces distribution of second doses at long-term care facilities
On Wednesday, Gov. Justice announced that residents and staff members at long-term care facilities across West Virginia have begun receiving their second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine this week. The Governor was joined Wednesday by Todd Jones, president of AMFM Nursing and Rehabilitation Centers, to discuss the progress being seen at their facilities.

On Friday, Gov. Justice announced all of the long-term care facilities under the AMFM Nursing & Rehabilitation Centers umbrella were expected to complete their second doses.
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Gov. Justice announces new vaccine info line
On Monday, Gov. Justice announced that, in order to help West Virginians get information on the distribution process and availability of COVID-19 vaccines, the state has launched a new COVID-19 Vaccine Info Line.

VACCINE INFO LINE: 1-833-734-0965.

The line will operate Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 
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Gov. Justice hosts virtual Change of Command ceremony for West Virginia National Guard Adjutant General
Gov. Justice held a virtual Change of Command ceremony to announce that Brig. Gen. William E. “Bill” Crane has officially assumed the duties, roles, and responsibilities as The Adjutant General for the West Virginia National Guard, effective Monday, Jan. 4, 2021. 
Crane is taking over command from Maj. Gen. James A. Hoyer, who is retiring from active service after 37 years in uniform (1983-2020). Hoyer has served as Adjutant General since 2011 when he was appointed to the position by then Governor Earl Ray Tomblin.
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Gov. Justice announces Speedway Motors to open new distribution center in Jefferson County
Gov. Justice announced Monday that Speedway Motors, a manufacturer, retailer, and distributor of high-quality automotive parts and racing products, plans to open a new distribution center in Kearneysville, bringing 25 new jobs to the state. Speedway Motors plans to begin hiring for the new distribution facility in January and February. Positions will include human resources, warehouse, and maintenance positions.
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Gov. Justice honors pair of long-time public servants
On Monday, Gov. Justice took time to honor a pair of long-time public servants who passed away recently from COVID-19.

Corporal Mark Rustemeyer, a veteran officer with the West Virginia Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation, died Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021, while under treatment for COVID-19. Rustemeyer was 58 years old and had served at the Saint Marys Correctional Center in Pleasants County since 1998. His death is the first of a West Virginia correctional employee attributed to COVID-19.

Gov. Justice also honored the memory of Captain Chuck Sadler, who most recently oversaw the training and certification standards for all West Virginia law enforcement through his role at the Justice and Community Services section within the Department of Homeland Security. He died on Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2020. Prior to his tenure with DHS, Sadler served for 24 years with the Charleston Police Department and retired as a captain. He was an Army Veteran.
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Gov. Justice, Game Changer deliver complete holiday experience to 40 West Virginia families through “Change Their Holiday” promotion
Gov. Justice, the “Head Coach and General Manager” of the West Virginia Game Changer initiative, said Thursday that the recently announced “Change Their Holiday” promotion through Game Changer raised over $50,000 in just three-and-a-half weeks leading up to the holidays. As a result, 40 West Virginia families affected by opioid and substance misuse were able to enjoy a complete holiday experience – down to the presents and the holiday meal – that otherwise might not have been possible.
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Gov. Justice names Cowles as Eastern Panhandle Regional Representative
Thursday, Gov. Justice announced the hiring of former West Virginia Delegate from the 58th District, Daryl Cowles, as his Regional Representative for West Virginia’s Eastern Panhandle counties. Cowles will split his time between the Eastern Panhandle and Charleston, working as a Legislative Assistant during sessions of the Legislature, and serving the remainder of his time as a Regional Representative for the Governor’s Office in the Eastern Panhandle.
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WVDEP accepting applications for teacher awards
The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection’s Rehabilitation Environmental Action Plan is now accepting applications for the 2021 Make It Shine Environmental Teacher of the Year awards. The deadline to submit an application is February 14, 2021. Winners will be chosen on the elementary, middle and high school levels, with each winner receiving a $500 personal award, plus a $1,000 award to be used in promoting STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) programs at their school.
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West Virginia WIC announces new food list
On Friday, the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, Bureau for Public Health announced the expansion of foods available for purchase with the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC). The approved food list was updated to encourage healthier eating habits and meet more nutritional needs.
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WVDNR announces lottery for wild boar hunting on private land
Hunters in West Virginia can enter a lottery to hunt on designated private lands owned by Natural Resource Partners during the upcoming firearms season for wild boar, the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources announced on Monday. Only 200 permits will be issued and the lottery is limited to West Virginia resident hunters. The hunt will take place on 8,000 acres of private land in Logan County during the wild boar firearms season on Feb. 5-7, 2021. West Virginia resident hunters will be able to submit an application for one of the 200 permits at wvhunt.com. The application period will open Jan. 5 and last 10 days, ending Jan. 14.
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Also this week:

Fire destroys WVDOH garage in Randolph County

WV National Guard honors Airman Logan Young during funeral service

WVDEP now accepting comments on a revised restoration plan for select streams in the Upper Guyandotte River watershed

Online ordering now available at ALDI for SNAP recipients
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Contact Information

Jordan Damron, jordan.l.damron@wv.gov

Contact

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:
304.558.3588

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