Governor (West Virginia)
Earl Ray Tomblin (i)
|Name:||Earl Ray Tomblin (i)|
|Home County:||Logan County|
I am a lifelong West Virginian who spent his career working to make West Virginia a better place. I have degrees from WVU and Marshall, and before becoming governor served as state Senate president. I’m proud to have helped position our state to take advantage of our tremendous potential.
I’m running for re-election because I want to continue the progress we’re making. I know we have more work to do, but companies are creating jobs in our state because we’ve lowered taxes for both businesses and consumers. The food tax will go down again July 1, and will be eliminated next year. In January 2012 alone, we saw $1 billion in new investment in West Virginia, providing good-paying jobs for our residents. We’ve also addressed drug abuse, the OPEB liability, Marcellus Shale drilling and mine safety in the past year. I want to lead the way to more successes.
- How would you balance the increasing demand for developing West Virginia’s energy resources while improving the quality of life and the environment?
- I am fighting over-regulation by the EPA and also led the way with reasonable regulations to allow development of Marcellus Shale while protecting the environment. Our state must remain a leader in energy production, and the mine safety bill we passed this session will help us do that responsibly.
- What are the state’s most critical education issues and how would you address them?
- I’m passionate about education and am pleased we are undertaking a comprehensive examination of our school system. We will act on those recommendations, with any savings being put back into schools. I’ve also worked to address our dropout rate and improve opportunities through our community and technical colleges.
- 50 WORDS OR LESS: What would you do to help West Virginia build an economy less reliant on extraction industries?
- While our state is diversifying its economy with investments like Toyota, Macy’s, and Gestamp, I believe our coal and natural gas industries will continue to play a significant role well into the future. We must invest in clean coal technology, and the economic impacts of shale drilling will be significant.
- 50 WORDS OR LESS: In order to continue meeting West Virginia’s balanced budget requirement, what specific programs would you cut or eliminate?
- I am proud to have not only balanced budgets but to have generated significant surpluses the past two years. I have asked agencies to reduce spending for the coming year and empowered them to decide where those reductions should occur, although I excluded our education system from those cuts.