Meeting this morning in the State House, were Eastern Panhandle legislators were Delegates Paul Espinosa, Ruth Rowan, Larry D. Kump, Steven Skinner, Mike Folk, Jason Barrett, Gary Howell, John Overington, Daryl Cowles, and Eric Householder as well as Senators
Don Cookman, Craig Blair, John Unger, and Herb Snyder.
Issues discussed by the caucus, but not limited to, included:
* Education. Concern was expressed by some legislators about mandates from Charleston that restrict county school boards' autonomy. Higher education issues, as well as Board of Education elections (HB 2555), were included in the discussion.
* The possible impact of the recent State Supreme Court overturning of the mandate for the Kanawha County Board of Education to provide a specified amount of funding to their local libraries and how that would affect other county libraries, especially in Berkeley County.
* Problems with the tremendous differential between the cost of housing in the Eastern Panhandle and some other regions of West Virginia, especially in regard to the salaries of state employees and teachers.
* The possibility of another circuit and family judge for the Eastern Panhandle.
* The Common Interest Ownership Act (Homeowners' Associations) legislative proposal, which still is pending introduction but will be forthcoming.
* The possibility of a formal agreement with the Maryland Area Regional Commuter (MARC) train which would give West Virginia a voice in the MARC operating decisions.
* Bar closing hours.
* Local home rule for cities and counties.