Wood County Indivisible welcomes Manchin town hall event

PARKERSBURG — A local group Friday was appreciative and encouraged by a U.S. senator scheduling a town hall meeting next week in Parkersburg to discuss issues.

“He’s going to answer all questions,” said Jeanne Peters of Wood County Indivisible, who has been in contact with Sen. Joe Manchin’s office about a meeting in Parkersburg.

The meeting is scheduled for 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Wednesday in the college theater at West Virginia University at Parkersburg. Everyone is invited.

Wood County Indivisible has attempted to arrange town hall meetings with local lawmakers. It has met with representatives of Sen. Shelley Moore Capito and Rep. David McKinley.

The group was hoping to have Manchin at an earlier discussion on the Affordable Care Act, but there were scheduling conflicts, Peters said.

The Affordable Care Act was a major issue for the group; however, the Republican-led effort to repeal the health care act created under President Barack Obama failed when it lacked support and was pulled from a vote in the House of Representatives.

Manchin has participated in more than a half dozen town-hall style meetings in Martinsburg, South Charleston, Huntington and Morgantown.

At issue now is a proposed budget eliminating many programs that benefit West Virginia, such as the Appalachian Regional Commission, Peters said.

President Donald Trump’s 2018 budget proposed reducing discretionary spending, including $3 billion from the Community Development Block Grant program, eliminates the HOME Investment Partnerships Program, the Choice Neighborhoods program and the Self-help Homeownership Opportunity Program, eliminates the $500 million Water and Wastewater loan and grant program, cuts $200 million from the Women, Infants and Children nutrition program, and $3.7 billion in grants for teacher training, after-school and summer programs.

Peters also expects the U.S. missile strike in Syria in response to the chemical attack on civilians will be discussed.

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