Development

West Virginia needs to develop new housing and infrastructure, and industrial sites that can employ us into the future.

As we have seen in Jefferson County recently, government decisions about industrial development have tended to overvalue speculative promises about jobs and undervalue public concerns about air and water pollution and long-term community well-being.

West Virginia needs to develop new housing and infrastructure, and industrial sites that can employ us into the future. But these development decisions must be balanced and sensitive to their environmental consequences and to public health issues. Our government should not be permitted automatically to put public concerns about conservation in second place behind the quest for more jobs.

Our Development Platform

We support legislation that will require the DEP to hold an air quality permit public hearing for any large new industrial facility in the county where the facility is to be located.

We support requiring new heavy industrial facilities to be strictly located in special zones set aside by counties for such industry after public input, taking account of pre-existing land use, the location of other industry and infrastructure, environmental conditions, and the location of schools and cultural sites.      

2022 Development Bills

HB 2882

Repealing Ban on Construction of Nuclear Power Plants

Seeks to repeal the limited ban on nuclear power in WV, which requires a showing (1) that there is a national facility that safely and permanently disposes of nuclear waste and has operated for 24 months, (2) that the construction of the new nuclear facility will be economically feasible for West Virginia rate payers, and (3) the proposed facility will comply with all applicable environmental protection laws.

CWV Position: Opposes

Status: Introduced 1/12/22; referred to Energy Committee; 1/21/22 referred to Government Organization Committee; 1/28/22 referred out to House on second reading; second reading 2/7/22

HB 4084

Amending Solid Waste Management Act to Cover Recycling of Post-Use Polymers

Would permit the construction and operation of plants to convert post-use plastics sorted from other solid waste into smaller particles through heating and other processes. Intended products are simpler plastics, waxes, lubricants, and coatings

CWV Position:

Status: Introduced 1/14/22; referred to Small Business Committee, then to Energy and Manufacturing; passed unanimously in House 2/8/22; sent to Senate and referred to Economic Development Committee 2/9/22; committee amendment 2/28/22; passed Senate 3/1/22; House concurred in Senate version 3/3/22; sent to Governor 3/9/22

HB 4408

Enlarging Authority to Enter Into Development Contracts for State Parks and Forests

This bill would enlarge the authority of the Director of DNR to enter third-party contracts for the development of recreation facilities at any state park or forest to a total of 40 years. The Director's present authority is for contracts totaling 20 years and is limited to six state parks. The new authority is limited to facilities that are in accordance with the purposes and authority granted to the DNR's Section of Parks and Recreation. A public hearing must be conducted before a contract is issued. No specific type of facility is prohibited. Watoga State Park is exempted.

CWV Position: Opposes

Status: Original bill introduced 1/26/22, referred to Agriculture and Natural Resources committee, then Government Organization; sent to Government Organization Committee 2/17/22; substitute bill originated by Government Organization Committee 2/21/22; substitute bill passed out of committee 2/23/22; passed Senate with amendment 3/12/22; passed House in amended form 3/12/22; sent to Governor 3/17/22

HB 4553

Removing All Zoning Restrictions on Exempt Wholesale Power Producers

This bill amends the statutory structure of zoning regulation in the state as it relates to non-utility wholesale electric power generators, such as wind and solar installations. It declares that these power generation facilities are "permitted uses" in any zoning district.

CWV Position: Opposes

Status: Introduced 2/3/22; referred to Judiciary committee; substitute bill passed out of committee 2/14/22; placed on House calendar 2/15/22; passed House 3/1/22; referred to Senate Energy, Industry and Mining committee 3/2/22

SB 4

Repealing Ban on Construction of Nuclear Power Plants

The purpose of this bill is to repeal the law that bans construction of nuclear power plants. Similar in effect to HB 2882.

CWV Position: Opposes

Status: Introduced 1/12/22; referred to Economic Development Committee; 1/24/22 to Senate on second reading; 1/28/22 sent to House for second reading; passed by House sent to Governor; 2/8/22 approved by Governor.

SB 485

Enlarging Authority to Enter Into Development Contracts for State Parks and Forests

Similar to HB 4408, this bill would enlarge the authority of the Director of DNR to enter third-party contracts for the development of recreation facilities at any state park or forest to a total of 50 years. The Director's present authority is for contracts totaling 20 years and is limited to six state parks. Unlike HB 4408, this bill has no limits on the purposes for which the Director may contract for new facilities. No specific type of facility is prohibited. .

CWV Position: Opposes

Status: Original bill introduced 1/25/22, referred Natural Resources committee, then Finance; substitute bill originated by Natural Resources committee 2/23/22; sent to Finance committee 2/23/22

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