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Tomblin addresses local issues

By Staff | Nov 18, 2010

Acting Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin addressed local newspaper editors about their areas’ issues in a phone conference Thursday.

The state legislature will discuss redistricting this upcoming session starting mid-January. Tomblin said he is certain the Eastern Panhandle will gain more power in Charleston.

“I know that the Eastern Panhandle will have additional seats in both the House and Senate,” he said.

Tomblin said as population grows, he sees the region gaining more of a voice in the legislature.

On the same redistricting note, Tomblin believes one man, one vote is the way to go. The Logan County representative, whose 7th District covers four counties, is also on board for single-delegate districts.

“I think that our constitution requires one man, one vote,” he said. “Over the years the courts have allowed multiple-member districts as well we single-member districts.”

Tomblin also said he would support a redistricting bill separating the state into 100 districts, up from the current 58 districts in the state.

As far as there being a possible disconnect between the quickly growing Eastern Panhandle and the capital, Tomblin plans to spend as much time in this region as he can.

“I understand completely,” he said. “There is a disconnect there.”

Tomblin added, “The Eastern Panhandle is a growing part of our state so I truly recognize the importance of trying to keep that connection of Charleston and the Eastern Panhandle alive. And I will do everything I can to make sure that I participate in whatever it may be in the Eastern Panhandle.”

But he wants to emphasize that West Virginia is still one state.

“We’re all West Virginians and we all need to be working together.”