Glenn Jeffries Pours Mind, Body, and Spirit Into Flood Relief

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Glenn Jeffries is being praised for his heroic efforts in helping others affected by the June 23 flooding that continues to take its toll. Upon hearing the news, his vacation came to a screeching halt and was replaced by backbreaking work in 100+ degree temperatures, coordination with other volunteers, and a dogged commitment to get the job done, no matter what.

He has been called a saint for his part in the process of healing and getting families back on their feet.

“Glenn Jeffries is one of the most selfless caring humanitarians I have ever had the pleasure to know,” says Melissa Riggs Huffman, the Democratic candidate in the District 40 House of Delegates race. “From the very first day after the flood when I contacted him in complete despair not knowing what to do or where to turn he took the lead in helping with the flood relief in our devastated community, and he has not stopped to this day. He has gone from bringing truck loads of much needed supplies to teaming up with the Mountain Mission creating Project Hope and rebuilding not only people’s homes, most not even in his campaign district, but helping to rebuild their lives and giving them a sense of normalcy and stability. There are no words to describe the gratitude this community has for Glenn Jeffries. He is in a major Senatorial race and if you talk to him personally his main concern is not his campaign but getting people back into their homes before cold weather hits. He has been such an inspiration and leader in his efforts that hundreds of members of the union trades and crafts have volunteered thousands of man hours to join him in rebuilding the flood devastated communities of Elk River. It is an honor to have worked beside him during the flood relief efforts and even more of an honor to call him my friend.”

In a Mountain Mission press release, Jeffries is credited as pivotal in a partnership of groups to help rebuilding homes along the Elk River.

Here is the link to the press release.

A long-term recovery group has been formed to help flood victims, reports WSAZ NewsChannel 3.

You can access the link to the online piece by clicking here.

Jeffries’ Facebook page documents it all. For example, a video titled “Finishing up drywall at Pauley home” shows just how much of a leader he is.

Click here to see the video.

Facebook member Sherry Thaxton Breeden shared the video.

“Glenn Jeffries not only talks the talk, he and many local union members walk the walk as they continue to help victims of the devastating flood get back in their homes,” she wrote on her Timeline. “I will proudly cast my vote on November 8 for Glenn Jeffries – Senate District 8. In my opinion Glenn already is a true statesman, a representative of the people, and we need his representation at our State Capitol!”

A Man and His Legacy

A blog post about Jeffries is incomplete without mention of one’s legacy. For that, here is what Ray Bradbury, author of Fahrenheit 451, had to say.

“Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. Something your hand touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you’re there.

“It doesn’t matter what you do, he said, so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that’s like you after you take your hands away. The difference between the man who just cuts lawns and a real gardener is in the touching, he said. The lawn-cutter might just as well not have been there at all; the gardener will be there a lifetime.”

Next time on October 17 on Second Chances For West Virginians: Remember in November – Why You Must Vote

About the Author

Robert Grossman has written for radio and TV news reporting as well as newspapers and magazines, including Bicycling and Professional Pilot.

Questions or comments? The comment form is shown below for your use.






Leadership in Action: Melissa Riggs Huffman Pitches in To Help Flood Victims

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Efforts are still in high gear to help victims of the June flooding that took more than 20 lives, left thousands homeless, and resulted in an estimated 36 million dollars in road damage.

Some candidates vying for office have expended a minimum amount of energy. Others have done only enough to put themselves in the public eye, to obtain the coveted photo op. Some candidates are to be praised for their 100 percent commitment to helping victims of the historic flooding.

Melissa Riggs Huffman, the Democratic candidate in the District 40 House of Delegates race, is definitively in the latter group.

Earlier in the year she set aside her campaign and focused solely on being a helper and playing a role at the front of the pack in organizing volunteer work.

“Just to make sure everyone understands, and I know that those who really know me do, my campaign is suspended right now,” she said. “I’m not even telling people who I am when we go door to door. “I’m not doing photo ops. I’m taking care of my hometown because I want to. I’m using my campaign page instead of my personal page because I can reach a wider audience and get more accomplished. I just felt that needed to be said. So now we don’t have to talk about it anymore and can continue to do what needs to be done!”

The Timeline on her Facebook page documents just how important flood relief is to her.  A sampling:

Moreover, because multiple schools were adversely impacted by the flooding, Huffman helps the Bridge Elementary School children she teaches, and is also welcoming and loving children from Clendenin Elementary  School.

“She makes such a difference in the lives of children, teaching them to reach for the stars and helping them accomplish their goals,” says Cathy Estep, a Huffman supporter. “The Kanawha County School system is blessed to have her, and so are the constituents of District 40.”

Melissa Huffman Is Awesome

Leading the charge with daily trips to areas ravaged by the flooding, Huffman helped spearhead the relief effort because she is truly a good person who wants to make the world a better place.

Therefore, residents of District 40 must look into their hearts and make the right choice in voting for Huffman as she battles House Speaker Tim Armstead in the general election on November 8.

Huffman supports second chances for first-time offenders of nonviolent crimes convicted of misdemeanors and low-level felonies. In turn, the second chance movement is behind her all the way.

Thank you, Melissa. Thank you, everyone who helped and continues to toil selflessly.

Thank you, dear reader, for your attention and for staying the course as we move forward to make West Virginia the best it can be.

Next time on September 17 on Second Chances For West Virginians: Glenn Jeffries Pours Mind, Body, and Spirit Into Flood Relief

About the Author

Robert Grossman has written for radio and TV news reporting as well as newspapers and magazines, including Bicycling and Professional Pilot.

Questions or comments? The comment form is shown below for your use.






 

 

 

District 40 House Race: Why Tim Armstead is the Wrong Choice

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The full state of recommended candidates was planned for this month’s blog post. However, it is believed that all will go well with the general election on November 8 as long as House Speaker Tim Armstead is voted out of office.

Armstead is public enemy number one to working families. The West Virginia AFL-CIO has called for his resignation.

He and Senate President Bill Cole are the targets of an online petition in which supporters are asked to tell them, “Shame On You!”

You can access the petition by clicking here.

House Speaker Armstead Kills Second Chance Bill Deemed Matter of National Security. That was the title of the post on March 17.

You can view that post by clicking here.

An op-ed in the Charleston Gazette-Mail echoed the same sentiments.

Here is the link to the published piece.

The Daily Mail showed its support for second chance legislation in an editorial on February 8, 2016.

You can access the editorial by clicking here.

A previous op-ed published in the Charleston Gazette-Mail was titled “Second chances good for W.Va. ex-cons and everyone else.”

Here is the link to that op-ed.

U.S. Senator Joe Manchin, D-WV, says legislation that gives a second chance to first-time offenders of nonviolent crimes convicted of misdemeanors and low-level felonies is the right thing to do for West Virginia. He agrees that the legislation is an economic development bill.

Sen. Manchin, on the right in the photo shown here, met with the author on December 8, 2015 at the Hart Senate Office Building in Washington, D.C.

“Our nation’s legal and moral underpinnings provide that anyone who makes a mistake and learns from it deserves a second chance. Those who have accepted the consequences of their actions and who have paid the price for their past transgressions should have the opportunity to reenter the workplace,” wrote Sen.  Manchin and 26 other senators in a letter to President Obama last year. “Yet, too often, the over 70 million Americans who have criminal histories face unreasonable barriers that prevent them from securing gainful employment. These barriers have prevented millions from becoming productive members of society and serve as one of the leading causes of recidivism.”

Fortunately, there is a positive option in the general election. Her name is Melissa Riggs Huffman, and she is the best choice in the District 40 House race.

You can access the post about her by clicking here.

How You Can Help

Please share this blog with others. There is strength in numbers. We will make this happen.

Next time on August 17 on Second Chances For West Virginians: Melissa Riggs Huffman Pitches In To Help Flood Victims

About the Author

Robert Grossman has written for radio and TV news reporting as well as newspapers and magazines, including Bicycling and Professional Pilot.

 

 

Second Chance Legislation Wins Place On Our Children, Our Future Anti-Poverty Platform

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For the second year in a row, the Second Chance for Employment Act has won a spot on the Our Children, Our Future (OCOF) annual anti-poverty platform. One of 18 policies, this year it’s part of the Putting WV Back to Work strategy.

The platform was created through an 18-month process that included more than 3,800 West Virginians from more than 177 partner organizations, congregations, unions, and chambers of commerce, who debated the issues, vetted them, and then voted on their top priorities, according to the group.  The ideas were submitted by Democrats and Republicans, pastors and doctors, policy experts and others.

The place on the platform adds a glimmer of hope to this year’s campaign, compared to the last legislative session, in which a groundswell of support by citizens, sheriffs, prosecutors, and the military failed to produce the desired result.

“I am so pleased that OCOF supporters have once again chosen to not give up on our fellow West Virginians who deserve a second chance,” says Delegate Mike Pushkin (D-Kanawha, 37).

Second chance legislation eliminates the 18 to 26- year- old age restriction in the current statute. As noted In Emergence From Civil Death: The Evolution of Expungement in West Virginia, this is the only state that denies those age 27 and older the ability to get criminal records expunged by sealing them.

“The age limitation should be removed because it is arbitrary, with no rational basis for the distinction between offenders based on age,” say co-authors WVU Law Professor Valena Beety and Judge Michael John Aloi, U.S. Magistrate for the Northern District of West Virginia.

The proposed legislation also adds low-level felonies, such as credit card fraud. Please keep in mind that there is no provision for a violent crime of any type, including use of a gun, domestic violence, and offenses against children. You can view a draft of last year’s legislation by clicking here.

Expungement eliminates any reference to the conviction when pursuing employment, housing, and other activities.

The primary argument against expungement is that employers should know about convictions. However, recidivism rates decline over time, meaning that convictions stop being indicative of an individual’s likelihood to commit additional crimes.

Here’s the Whole Platform

Great Education and Jobs

Make West Virginia the Best Place to Start a Small Business (-) (Small Business Regulatory Review, Entrepreneurship Ed in Schools, One Stop Shop for Starting a Business)

Jobs for Coal Families (-) (Tax Cuts for Hiring Miner Families, Re-Training, Infrastructure)

K-12 Education for Real Life (n) (Simulated Work Place, Substance Abuse, Computer Science, Civics, Phys Ed)

Fair Workplace (n) (Repeal Right to Work, Restore Prevailing Wage, Equal Pay, Paid Family Leave)

Make Higher Education Debt-Free (-) (Pay it Forward, Tax Credits for Returning Students)

Early Childhood Education for All (n) (Expanding Pre-K, Child Care Benefits, Home-Visiting Statewide)

Healthy Communities

Knocking WV off the Worst Health Lists (n) (community health workers, open up schools as rec centers, health class, prevention)

Increasing Safeguards to our Water Supply (n)

School Based Mental Health (-) (social workers in schools)

Stop the Opioid Crisis (+) (Pain Pill Tax = Recovery Houses and Prevention)

Cannabis for Medical Use (+)

Turning Around Dilapidated Buildings (-) (Loan Fund for Cities to Re-Purpose Run Down Buildings)

Strengthening Democracy

Infrastructure Now: Roads and Broadband (n) (Massive infrastructure program, funded by Modernization of Fuel Tax, Fed Dollars, DMV Fees)

Encouraging Work & Earned Income Tax Credit (n)(Employers pay for workers on food stamps; tax credit for families who work)

Pay Your Fair Share (+) (Closing Tax Loopholes, Create State Fiscal Office)

Ending Youth Incarceration (+) (Limits on youth parole and incarceration, reinvest savings in treatment and community-based services)

Middle Class Tax Cuts (n) (Fair tax policy that levels effective tax rates for high, middle, and low-income earners)

Putting WV Back to Work (+) (Second Chance for Employment, Benefits Shouldn’t Punish Work and Marriage, PTIF)

“WV is in a fiscal crisis,” the group says. “This Commitment is revenue neutral. Items like the Pain Pill Tax and Closing Tax Loopholes make up for the cost of things like expanding Early Childhood Education. Many issues are designed to be revenue neutral; i.e., infrastructure projects would be paid for by a modernization of the fuel tax and DMV fees. + indicates revenue positive. – indicates a cost. n indicates revenue neutral.”

A Voice for Kids and Families

The Our Children, Our Future Campaign to End Child Poverty is an initiative of the West Virginia Healthy Kids and Families Coalition. Thirty percent of West Virginia boys and girls under age six live in poverty, according to the group. Expanding the workforce is a key priority in changing that statistic.

You can learn more at ocofwv.org.

How You Can Help

Your vote in the general election on Tuesday, November 8 helps determine the ultimate success for second chance legislation and in putting West Virginia back on track.

Please share this blog with others. There is strength in numbers. We will make this happen.

Next time on July 17 on Second Chances For West Virginians: Who To Vote For – The Full Slate of Recommended Candidates

About the Author

Robert Grossman has written for radio and TV news reporting as well as newspapers and magazines, including Bicycling and Professional Pilot.

 

District 40 House Race: Why Melissa Riggs Huffman is the Best Choice

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Melissa Riggs Huffman, the Democratic opponent to Republican incumbent Speaker Tim Armstead in the District 40 House of Delegates race, says she’s ready for a tough battle to unseat him.

“It’s not going to be easy,” she says. “But it can be done.”

You can view Huffman’s Facebook page by clicking here. A campaign Web page is in the works.

The “No More Armstead” campaign anxiously awaited the results of the primary election on May 10, in which all hopes rested with labor-backed Ronald Shamblin. Alas, it was not to be, with Armstead storming to the win with 68 percent of the vote over 25 percent for Shamblin.

Now all eyes turn to Huffman to achieve a difficult task, ousting the man first elected to the House chamber in 1998.

Huffman’s background gives her the required depth for the fight. She is currently a third-grade teacher at Bridge Elementary School in Elkview, having started with the Kanawha County School District in 2009. Before that she was a paralegal for 15 years.

And she is no stranger to challenges. She juggled going to college at Midway University in Kentucky with raising then 8-month-old daughter Alexa and Ava, a second daughter who was three years of age. The result: graduating magna cum laude with a B.A. in Elementary Education in 2008.

Huffman, with a strong work ethic, says her campaign for success in the general election will include meeting as many people as possible in District 40 and spreading her message of hope and positive change.

“We’re going to be out all summer knocking on doors,” she says.

Huffman Believes in Second Chances

Huffman believes in legislation that gives a second chance to first-time offenders of nonviolent crimes convicted of misdemeanors and low-level felonies. That is a stark contrast with Armstead, who has angered voters by blocking the Second Chance for Employment Act two years in a row. He is also despised for his participation in the GOP attack on working people.

Because of her desire to help West Virginia attain the maximum extent of its greatness, and because of her support of second chance legislation, Huffman is enthusiastically endorsed by Second Chances For West Virginians.

She is keenly interested in legislation that affects working people in West Virginia. In that regard, Huffman believes Right To Work legislation is wrong.

Other key issues: education reform, addressing mental health matters, and working to resolve the opioid addiction crisis.

The encouraging news about Huffman’s campaign is that she received more votes than Armstead in the primary election on May 10. Votes for Huffman totaled 1,703, 59 more than Armstead’s 1644, according to information released on Secretary of State Natalie Tennant’s Web site.

That is a harbinger of good things to come in the general election on November 8. Even so, it has to be pedal to the metal with a 100 percent effort. After all, there is no telling what kind of dirty tricks Republican dark money might have up its sleeve.

Ousting  Armstead can be done. It will be done.

“She’s our only hope now,” says Delegate Mike Pushkin (D-Kanawha, 37), who is running for re-election.

If you live in District 40 (Big Chimney, Pinch, Elkview, Clendenin, etc.) or have family or friends there, please follow Melissa Riggs Huffman’s campaign and help build the momentum for her victory in the general election. 

You make a difference in helping our Mountain State move from the bottom of the heap to where it truly belongs.

Are you behind Huffman in her campaign? If so, why? If not, why not? Please respond in the contact form below.






Next time on June 17: Second Chance Legislation Wins Place On Our Children, Our Future Anti-Poverty Platform

About the Author

Robert Grossman has written for radio and TV news reporting as well as newspapers and magazines, including Bicycling and Professional Pilot.

 

Jeff Kessler Gets the Nod for Governor; Why Ronald Shamblin is Best in District 40

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Democratic candidate Jeff Kessler gets Second Chances For West Virginians’ endorsement in the race for governor because of his commitment to the ongoing campaign to give a second chance to first-time offenders of nonviolent crimes convicted of misdemeanors and low-level felonies.

“People are looking for someone to stand up and lead,” said Kessler during a Create WV gubernatorial forum. “And I’m the only candidate who has fixed a problem within the confines of state government.”

Here is the link to his Facebook page.

You can access his Web site by clicking here.

The second chance effort involves legislation to amend the state’s expungement statute by eliminating the 18 to 26 year-old age restriction and by adding low-level felonies. Expungement shields criminal convictions from public view, thus eliminating the black marks that are glaringly apparent when applying for employment or housing.

The age restriction has been called “arbitrary and irrational” by Judge Michael Aloi, U.S. Magistrate for the Northern District of West Virginia, and co-author of Emergence from Civil Death: The Evolution of Expungement in West Virginia.

The legislation, which will be introduced in the 2017 session, does not provide a second chance for offenses involving serious injury, sex-related or stalking offenses, any offense involving a firearm or deadly weapon, and any felony involving a minor.

Citizens, sheriffs, prosecutors, and the military agree that second chance legislation is the right thing to do for West Virginia by adding jobs, helping poor children and their families, improving local economies, and making the state safer by reducing recidivism.

Kessler’s legislative background includes being a co-sponsor for Senate Bill 411 and the lead sponsor for Senate Bill 526, both of which involved expungement.

Simply put, out of all of the candidates, the Senate Minority Leader has the most vigorous stance regarding second chance legislation.

“I will make it a cornerstone legislative proposal of my workforce development efforts,” says Kessler, deemed Champion of the People and Friend of the Forgotten. “I will introduce the bill during my very first State of the State address. Finally, I will use my bully pulpit to advocate for its successful passage and then…I will proudly sign the bill into law!”

Why Ronald Shamblin is Best in District 40

A strong governor works hand in hand with like-minded lawmakers. In the House of Delegates race in District 40, Ronald Shamblin is the Republican candidate who fits that bill.

District 40 includes places in Kanawha County such as Big Chimney, Pinch, Elkview, and Clendenin. You can view a legislative map by clicking here.

You can view Shamblin’s Facebook page by clicking here.

Shamblin says when elected he will do his best to work for people and not outside interests. After the primary priority of having a balanced budget is met, the most important work for lawmakers, he says, is “legislation that will help keep the standard of living and maintain West Virginia by giving the people a voice in our capitol.”

He was on the Tom Roten Morning Show and challenged the House Speaker. You can listen to the show by clicking here.

You can read his piece, “I Love West Virginia,” by clicking on the following link: 12910633_1279836215364788_442251972_n

As for second chances, Shamblin fully supports the movement to help put the Mountain State back on track.

“Second chance legislation to me means that our society understands the value in rehabilitation instead of incarceration,” he says. “To make something new again, allowing life to begin when you think it’s over. Giving this creates hope and a reason to try.”

House Speaker Tim Armstead, the Republican incumbent in District 40, violated the rights of parents and children by not making the appropriate notification regarding a registered sex offender who worked at the capitol, and then participated in covering up the scandal, according to Chris Regan in a blog post at homeyesterday.com. You can view the post by clicking here.

Armstead is public enemy number one to second chance legislation.

For more details, click here to see the last post. Click here to see an op-ed in the Charleston Gazette-Mail.

The other candidate, Lewis Taylor, has not responded to an e-mail and could not be reached by phone.

Shamblin says he plans to win.

Remember in May – and November

Remember in November, with its own hashtag, is a slogan that is being widely circulated. So wide, in fact, that the slogan was the impetus for a statehouse rally that drew about 150 attendees on the final night of the regular legislative session.

The battle cry is heard far and wide, including on Facebook, in which a page proclaims that Women Will Remember in November 2016. Many people want to remember. That is wonderful news. This type of remembrance spurs us to action, serving as a catalyst for change.

Let’s hit the brakes for a moment and reflect on primary elections, which are often overlooked. Be that as it may, primary elections are an integral part of the electoral system, creating a two-step of possibilities instead of waiting until matters are presented in black and white.

Perhaps Remember in May is not as catchy. It produced no hits in a Google search, underscoring the popularity of the other slogan. Alas, there will be no rallies or press conferences lauding its usefulness or promoting its popularity.

The message is one that bears repeating: Your votes in the primary election on Tuesday, May 10 help determine who the nominees are that get voted on in the general election on Tuesday, November 8.

Please vote for Kessler and Shamblin in the primary election. Also, please vote with your head and with your heart, not just along party lines.

If you have any questions, please feel free to inquire using the comment box at the end of the post.

The well-being of West Virginia depends, in part, on your participation in the process and ultimately, your choices.

Your vote makes a difference. Remember in May – and November.

Next time on May 17 on Second Chances For West Virginians: Melissa Riggs Huffman Challenges House Speaker Armstead in District 40 House Race

About the Author

Robert Grossman’s background includes writing for newspapers and magazines as well as radio and TV news reporting.






 

 

 

House Speaker Armstead Kills Second Chance Bill Deemed Matter of National Security

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Senate Bill 411, the Second Chance for Employment Act, had no chance because of House Speaker Tim Armstead (R-Kanawha, 40) and the House colleagues who feared his wrath if they opposed him.

Fact: It was an economic development bill designed to give a second chance to first-time offenders of nonviolent crimes convicted of misdemeanors and low-level felonies.

Fact: The bill’s intent was to add jobs, help impoverished children and their families, improve local economies, and keep West Virginia safer.

Hope soared when the Senate passed the bill by a unanimous vote of 34-0 on February 27. Hope dwindled when the House Speaker referred the bill to two House committees, Industry and Labor, then Judiciary to block it on February 29.

Delegate Mike Pushkin (D-Kanawha, 37) told the Journal News that it was unnecessary to reference the bill to more than one committee, and that Armstead sent the bill to Industry and Labor for the sole reason of killing the legislation. You can view the entire article by clicking on the following link:  Second chance for employment bill could die before sessions end.

The chairman of the Industry and Labor Committee, Delegate John Overington (R-Berkeley, 62), told the Journal News the bill was not considered because of time constraints. However, he made that statement with more than a week remaining in the session. Pushkin asserted that adequate time was left to consider the bill.

Overington’s collaboration led to stalling of the bill and its lack of advancement to Judiciary.

Further coverage appears in this piece in the Charleston Gazette-Mail.

Meanwhile, the bill gained support of a group of West Virginia Army National Guard generals. Faced with abysmal recruitment and 35 percent of potential recruits rejected because of criminal convictions, they called the bill a matter of national security.

The generals requested a meeting with Armstead. He denied the request.

Without a chance for expungement, or sealing criminal records from public view, anyone with a criminal conviction – no matter how minor – is forced to see their past punish them for the rest of their life.

Reducing recidivism and providing economic support to communities statewide were seen as a commonsense approach to helping our struggling state.

The proposed legislation did not provide a second chance for offenses involving serious injury, sex-related or stalking offenses, any offense involving a firearm or deadly weapon, and any felony involving a minor.

The only known argument against the bill was that employers should know about an applicant’s criminal background. That is true with violent felonies. However, we are talking about nonviolent crimes.

Research clearly demonstrates that rates of recidivism decline over time for ex-offenders. Therefore, convictions cease to be an indicator of an individual’s propensity to commit additional crimes.

In addition, research also shows how recidivism is directly tied to housing and employment. Second chance legislation would keep West Virginia safer.

The bill had significant safeguards: A waiting period in which an individual must remain crime-free, prosecutorial notification, judicial discretion, and the necessity that the applicant show by clear and convincing evidence that he or she has been rehabilitated and is law-abiding.

Even with a groundswell of support – including citizens, sheriffs, prosecutors, and the military – and even though it was fiscally the right thing to do – the bill had no chance.

Judge Michael Aloi, U.S. Magistrate for the Northern District of West Virginia, co-authored Emergence From Civil Death: The Evolution of Expungement in West Virginia that details the legislation’s benefits. He also appeared before the Joint Standing Committee on the Judiciary last year and asked lawmakers to amend the expungement statute.

Dopamine, the neurochemical that produces a sense of pleasure, is the primary chemical transmitter involved in the reward of power.

“But too much power – and hence too much dopamine – can disrupt normal cognition and emotion, leading to gross errors of judgment and imperviousness to risk, not to mention huge egocentricity and lack of empathy for others,” says Dr. Ian Robertson, author of The Winner Effect: How Power Affects Your Brain.

A last-ditch effort by Pushkin in the form of a motion to discharge the bill from committee was thwarted by House Majority Leader Daryl Cowles (R-Morgan, 58), whose motion to table Pushkin’s was affirmed in a floor vote. Here is a link to the voting results.

It must be noted that most of the lawmakers who were opposed to the discharge motion held that position because it circumvents the normal course of parliamentary procedure. Also, voting for the motion carried the risk of reprisal from the House Speaker.

“This place is upside down,” says Sen. Mike Romano (D-Harrison, 12), one of the co-sponsors of the bill.

Fact: We must do what is necessary to turn West Virginia right side up. Not by moving away, but by taking action and doing the right thing so the Mountain State can attain the maximum extent of its greatness. The continued death of positive  legislation cannot continue.

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing,” said Edmund Burke, an Irish political philosopher.

Fact: The House Speaker has blocked the Second Chance for Employment Act two years in a row. The success of next year’s second chance campaign depends, in part, on Armstead not being re-elected in District 40.

“I believe that any individual who has come to a point after conviction that they have paid the full debt to society for their actions should have a new chance at life,” says Republican candidate Ronald Shamblin.

Republican candidate Lewis Taylor has not responded to an e-mail and could not be reached by phone. More details to follow in the next post.

Melissa Riggs Huffman is the Democratic candidate in District 40.

I can’t believe they didn’t pass it!” she exclaims.

In District 62, Democrat Christy Santana is opposing Overington, the incumbent.

“For those who have nonviolent crimes, serve their time and go through the steps set up in this bill, I don’t see a reason why they can’t earn a second chance,” she says “This bill could help get people back to work and allow them the chance to become a productive part of society.”

Remember in November is a fine slogan. And perhaps Remember in May is not as catchy.

However, remember this: Your votes in the primary election on Tuesday, May 10 help determine who the nominees are that get voted on in the general election on Tuesday, November 8.

Let’s get busy.

Next time on April 17 on Second Chances For West Virginians: Jeff Kessler Gets the Nod for Governor; Why Ronald Shamblin is Best in District 40

About the Author

Robert Grossman’s background includes writing for newspapers and magazines as well as radio and TV news reporting.