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CURRENT STORIES


Raising the bar

Something must have lit a fire under our state legislators. Whether it was simply the fact that they realized they had their work cut out for them or they had some other inspiration, we don't care. We're just glad they're crafting bills before the last night of the session, which has made for good TV but lousy legislation.

Since convening in early January, the state Legislature has been very active in dealing with crucial bills important to all West Virginians.

Members of the House of Delegates have passed bills on medical malpractice, workers' compensation, all-terrain vehicle safety and higher education, while Senate committees have worked on most of those measures.

Legislators claim this year's speedy agenda will leave ample time to deal with a budget of more than $3 billion. Let's hope so.

The budget will be hard to handle as the state's health care costs have increased while tax revenue and returns on state investments have declined.

But we're thrilled to see our legislators accomplish work early in the session. This should also leave them more time to look at new issues that crop up as the legislative session plays out.

Rarely has there been a year when so many critical measures had to be addressed quickly. But that's just what our state legislators have done.

This year's Legislature may very well set the standard by which future sessions may be measured.

Patrick Martin