Saturday, February 12, 2011
EKB Capsule News...West Virginia...2-13-'11
- To make up for lost instructional time because of the recent snow, the Raleigh County Board of Education is implementing "Super Saturdays." Each school in the county will be open on certain Saturdays for voluntary educational time. Elementary students will be studying reading and math, while secondary schools focus on science, social studies, language arts and math. The "Super Saturdays" are expected to begin March 5th.
- Plans are in the works to create a transitional home for veterans on the top floor of the building on 229 Capitol Street in downtown Charleston, which would serve as an extension of the Roark Sullivan Lifeway Center, a transitional home, on Smith Avenue. Officials with Roark Sullivan say the home would provide ten additional veterans with support and would be supervised at all times.
- Senator Joe Manchin is co-sponsoring the Reduce Unnecessary Spending Act of 2011, which would give the president authority to remove any single provision he considers to be wasteful spending from any bill passed by Congress. It would not affect programs like Medicare and Social Security. Currently, when Congress passes a law and sends it to the White House, the president can sign or veto the entire piece of legislation, but he cannot question individual items. President Bill Clinton began promoting the bill in 1993, shortly after becoming president. It passed Congress in 1996, with major support from the Republican Party, but in 1998, the U.S. Supreme Court held, in a 6-3 vote, that the line-item veto law violated a constitutional provision that states all legislation must be passed by both houses of Congress, and then sent to the White House in its entirety to be signed into law or vetoed.
- U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin says about 350 people died as a result of prescription drug-related overdoses in West Virginia in 2009. Federal and state officials are planning a one-day summit to discuss prescription-drug abuse in West Virginia. The summit is scheduled for February 25th at the University of Charleston.
- President Obama and House Republicans want to make significant cuts in federal funding that, through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, helps low-income families pay their heating bills, but Democratic Senator Jay Rockefeller wants them to reverse their plans. Friday, Rockefeller signed a letter sent to Jacob Lew, director of the U.S. Office of Budget and Management, asking the Obama administration to reconsider those cuts. Last winter, 92,628 West Virginians received LIHEAP home-heating assistance. This winter, 77,125 West Virginians have received assistance, and that number is increasing. House Republicans also want to cut at least $400 million from the program's emergency funds.
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