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Future Fund: Great idea, but...

August 19, 2013

Most West Virginians have had the importance of putting some of our earnings into savings accounts drilled into our heads. If we wanted that new bicycle, mom and dad said, we needed to save up for it....

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Aug-22-13 1:39 PM

I don't believe in government "picking winners" either. But some effort such as the "Reconnecting McDowell" project probably are needed. When teachers don't want to move to a county, how do you tip a negative-feedback spiral into a positive-feedback spiral? (Maybe you included that in "infrastructure", but if so it certainly wasn't clear.)

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Aug-22-13 10:20 AM

If you build it, they will come. I'm quite confident that if industry can get their goods in and out of southern WV, someone will come in and take advantage of the workforce. At any rate, the only role the state should play in economic development of that part of the state is to ensure the public has a viable infrastructure. Contrary to the beliefs of many, it is not the role of the state to pick and choose what industry to invest in. All one has to do to see how irresponsible that endeavor can be is look at the Obama Administration’s picks for public investments.

H t t p :/ / w w w . c o n s e r v a tiveactionalerts****/2012/10/obama-wont-cede-green-energy-failures/

I realize many will attack the source without reading it, which is a mistake on their part. The information is accurate.

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Aug-21-13 10:42 AM

AaronS & Suttle each have a part of the solution. Roads are necessary but not sufficient.

At least we have a pretty good idea how to solve the roads problem. What the rest of the solution is, is less clear. But no less necessary.

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Aug-20-13 3:04 PM

"Southern West Virginia is going to need to reinvent itself economically and this fund can be used as a good start."

Marlarkey. If Southern WV is going to reinvent itself, they will need roads to get there. Finish I-73/74, the Coalfields Expressway and The King Coal Highway so potential businesses can get around.

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Aug-20-13 8:58 AM

The Future Fund Account money should be used for economic stimulation/development in Southern West Virginia which has relied on coal as its economic engine. As we all know that engine will be running out of coal which is predicted to be in decline. Southern West Virginia is going to need to reinvent itself economically and this fund can be used as a good start.

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Aug-19-13 11:31 PM

Existing WV Oil and Gas Severance Tax is 5% with pay out of: 90% of revenue deposited in the general fund First $24 million of the severance taxes collected, including those from coal and other minerals, allocated to debt service for infrastructure bonds 10% allocated to counties and municipalities 75% distributed to oil and gas producing counties 25% distributed to all counties and municipalities, based on population densities First $4 million in revenues attributable to coalbed methane: 75% distributed to oil and gas producing counties 25% distributed in equal shares to non-oil and gas producing counties, with no producing county receiving less than a non-producing county

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Aug-19-13 12:04 PM

I think it's a bad idea as too many people will disagree on what exactly constitutes progress and how the money should be spent. If additional revenues are needed now, then we should address that with the gas severance taxes with anything additional used to provide for our infrastructure with the counties in which the gas is extracted getting priority.

I understand that's likely not fair to some counties, especially those that provided for the entire state with money from coal but it is the roads and bridges that are being destroyed with the trucks needed to extract the gas so they should be taken care of.

Revenues not needed should be returned to the tax payers.

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