West Virginia Week in Review - June 18, 2022


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8 IN A ROW: Gov. Justice announces West Virginia YET AGAIN breaks state record for lowest unemployment rate ever
Gov. Justice announced Wednesday that West Virginia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased to 3.5% for May 2022, breaking the all-time record for the lowest unemployment rate recorded in state history for the 8th consecutive month. The number of unemployed state residents decreased by 500 in May, while total employment grew by 1,700 over the month.
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WEST VIRGINIA DAY: State’s 159th birthday celebration scheduled for noon on Monday, June 20, at Culture Center
Gov. Justice is inviting all West Virginians to the State Culture Center at the Capitol Complex in Charleston on Monday, June 20, 2022, for a day of fun in celebration of West Virginia’s 159th birthday. The festivities start at noon, when the Governor and First Lady Cathy Justice will arrive and greet guests. A West Virginia Day reception will be held at 1:00 p.m.
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Gov. Justice announces initiative to recruit, train, and strengthen West Virginia’s EMS workforce
Gov. Justice announced Tuesday the launch of a new initiative to address the state’s need for additional trained Emergency Medical Services (EMS) professionals – a challenge that has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Funded through a $10 million portion of West Virginia’s allocation of CARES Act dollars, the new EMS WV: Answer the Call program will fund strategic initiatives that will bolster the state’s EMS workforce and equip communities to better care for West Virginia citizens now and into the future.
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Gov. Justice announces first three Economic Enhancement Grant recipients awarded over $12.8 million for water and wastewater infrastructure projects
Gov. Justice announced Monday that, less than two months after calling a Special Session of the West Virginia Legislature to secure $250 million for the newly established Economic Enhancement Grant Fund, the program’s first grant recipients have been awarded a combined $12.8 million for a trio of water and wastewater infrastructure projects across the state.
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Gov. Justice announces WVDEP’s Brownfield Revolving Fund program provides first low-interest loan to City of Wheeling
Gov. Justice announced Monday that one of the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection's newest funding programs is moving forward with its first project. The WVDEP’s Brownfield Revolving Fund has provided its first low-interest loan to the City of Wheeling to help remediate and redevelop the former Penn-Wheeling Closure site.
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West Virginia surpasses 7,000 COVID deaths, but case numbers improve slightly
During his briefing Monday, Gov. Justice announced that West Virginia has now surpassed 7,000 COVID-19-related deaths.

“This is a milestone that none of us wanted to hit,” Gov. Justice said. “It’s just hard to fathom. You think of all the tough things we’ve seen on the news over the years, it’s a drop in the bucket compared to this."
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Gov. Justice: West Virginia “ready to go” if and when federal government approves vaccine for children under 5
During his briefing Wednesday, Gov. Justice announced that West Virginia’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution leaders are “ready to go” if and when federal health regulators approve and recommend the vaccine for use in children under 5 years old.

On Friday, the FDA authorized the use of Moderna and Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine for children as young as six months.
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Gov. Justice declares Juneteenth 2022 as State holiday in West Virginia
Gov. Justice issued a proclamation Monday, officially declaring Juneteenth 2022 as a State holiday in West Virginia. Juneteenth, which is recognized on June 19 each year, celebrates the ending of slavery in the United States.

The Herbert Henderson Office of Minority Affairs is hosting a Juneteenth Celebration on the Kanawha Boulevard lawns of the West Virginia Capitol Complex on Saturday, June 18, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.
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Gov. Justice declares State of Emergency for Ohio County due to severe storm damage
On Wednesday, Gov. Justice declared a State of Emergency for Ohio County due to a severe weather system that struck the county overnight June 13-14, 2022. The storm caused flash-flooding as well as downed trees and power lines, causing road blockages and leaving thousands without power. As part of this State of Emergency declaration, the Governor has directed the West Virginia Emergency Management Division to implement the West Virginia Emergency Operations Plan as necessary, mobilize appropriate personnel and resources to respond to the emergency, and facilitate the provision of essential emergency services.
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Gov. Justice appoints Jarred Cannon to 22nd District seat in House of Delegates
On Tuesday, Gov. Justice appointed Jarred Cannon of Hurricane to the West Virginia House of Delegates, representing the 22nd District. The district covers parts of Boone, Lincoln, Logan, and Putnam counties. Cannon fills the vacancy created by the resignation of Joe Jeffries earlier this month and will serve the remainder of the unexpired term.
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WVDOH accepts bids for 14 projects, including multiple ADA curb cuts
Contracts to install ADA-compliant curb cuts in 13 communities around West Virginia are among 14 projects included in a bid letting conducted by the West Virginia Division of Highways on Tuesday. The WVDOH is reviewing the bids and hopes to award contracts for these projects soon.
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West Virginians can ride Hatfield-McCoy trails for free during holiday weekend
On Wednesday, Gov. Justice announced that West Virginians will be able to ride the Hatfield-McCoy Trail System for free this weekend, June 17-June 20, 2022. West Virginia Day Trail Passes will be available to state residents who present a valid West Virginia driver’s license or West Virginia state-issued I.D. at trailheads and facilities.
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West Virginia Department of Education welcomed the 2022 Knights of the Golden Horseshoe
The West Virginia Department of Education recognized 221 eighth-grade students from middle schools across the state as 2022 Knights of the Golden Horseshoe today at the West Virginia Culture Center in Charleston. Three ceremonies were held to honor students for achieving this milestone. The WVDE inducted the students as part of the 306th anniversary of the Golden Horseshoe legacy, recognizing them for their achievement in knowledge of West Virginia history.
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Route 20: West Virginia Division of Highways designing repair for 6 foot sinkhole near Hinton
The West Virginia Division of Highways has erected barricades at the site of a 30-foot-deep sinkhole that opened on WV 20 near Hinton while determining the best way to repair the damage. The sinkhole, approximately six feet across and 30 feet deep, opened on the shoulder of WV 20 just north of Hinton. A failing drainage structure is causing the soil in the area to collapse.
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Also this week:

P-EBT to be Issued for Non-Students Receiving SNAP in West Virginia

Mabscott Exit of West Virginia Turnpike to close overnight on Monday, June 20, 2022

W.Va. Guard sending support to Ohio County following storm damage

Contact Information

Jordan Damron, jordan.l.damron@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

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