West Virginia Record

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Morrisey says Trump plan to create infrastructure jobs will help West Virginia

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By Chris Dickerson | Jan 9, 2020

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CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey is hailing a Trump administration proposal that promises to improve peoples’ lives and the state’s economy.

The proposal would streamline and simplify the review process for major construction projects by eliminating costly delays and litigation, all in the name of supporting those who build the nation’s pipelines, highways and power plants.

“These terrible delays increase costs and drive down the availability of well-paying jobs,” Morrisey said. “By shortening the average delay, President Trump’s proposal will lead to more new roads, higher wages for West Virginia families and a better quality of life for everyone.”

Trump's proposal, introduced Jan. 9, would streamline regulations related to the National Environmental Protection Act, the first such reform in about 40 years.

Current regulations require an extensive review process, which often requires environmental impact studies that can take years and cost millions. Morrisey's office said the average approval process takes more than four years, although approving a lease for a mine in southern Wayne County took eight years.

The existing regulatory review process also can result in legal roadblocks, which can indefinitely halt projects and increase costs for taxpayers and businesses.

Morrisey said his concern over such issues has motivated him to lead multistate coalitions on matters related to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, the Waters of the United States rule, the Affordable Clean Energy rule and regulations surrounding methane.

These efforts, many aimed at turning back Obama-era regulations, are meant to protect coal miners, natural gas workers, farmers, property owners, job creators and the countless others who rely upon their success.

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