Due to unforeseen circumstances I have been unable to attend floor sessions and committee meetings in Charleston, but rest assured, I have been in contact with my Senate Office, the Senate Clerk’s Office, committee staff on which I serve and leadership to stay up-to-date with the progress of this legislative session.
While I may not be there physically at this time, I am constantly receiving updates on legislation that is under consideration and am still able to represent my constituents in the legislative process.
I will continue to update you throughout this process and hope to return as soon as I am able. I thank you for your patience, and as always, I am humbled and honored to be your representative in the West Virginia State Senate.
The past week has been hard for many in West Virginia. On Thursday a chemical called 4-Methylcyclohexane Methanol, leaked from a tank into the Elk River. The leak left 300,000 people without clean water and as a result the Governor declared a state of emergency. Days following the leak citizens were left to rely on bottled water, but through donations from across the state and from across the country, we have and will continue to persevere. As clean water becomes available again, I hope you will continue to practice the same compassion and support that I have seen the last few days.
This crisis highlighted the failure of current regulation and inspections of chemical storage tanks. Senate Bill 373 was recently introduced and would require above ground storage tanks to be registered and would create stricter regulations. The Joint Legislative Oversight Commission on State Water Resources will also be investigating the chemical spill and is working to introduce legislation to avoid a crisis like this from happening again and to protect our waterways and the citizens of West Virginia.
If you should have any questions or comments regarding any issues or bills before the legislature please feel free to contact me. To write me, my address is Senator Douglas Facemire Capitol, Building 1, Room 217W, State Capitol Complex, Charleston, WV 25305. Or you may call me at (304) 357-7845. I encourage all my constituents to remain active and become part of the legislative process.