We at The Hub are thrilled to announce the newest addition to our Executive Leadership Team, Katie Loudin.
The air in the Capitol halls is quite different than it was at the beginning of January. The legislative machine is picking up speed and legislators, staff, and lobbyists are hustling to get bills drafted, introduced, advocated for or against, and moved through the committee process.
During this rush, it’s easy for bills to be picked up and make progress or get lost and forgotten about. As citizens, it’s vitally important to be asking why some bills are moved forward while others are abandoned. I’ve mentioned the importance of asking the kinds of questions that help to create good policy before, but it seems important in this moment to zero in on this question in particular.
Why do some bills move forward while others are left behind? It often depends on the motivation behind why a bill was introduced.
Most often, legislation is proposed because it attempts to address a problem that citizens are experiencing, and that’s a good thing. But legislation can also be introduced for a number of, and perhaps multiple, other reasons.
Sometimes a bill gives legislators an opportunity to speak publicly about an issue that they think will play well with voters, or take a stance that they feel is their moral obligation to take. Other times, bills become opportunities for legislators to suss out larger issues like how the state government should function and what areas governments ought to have control over.
If both citizens and legislators can depend on each other to ask these questions, it develops the kind of mutual accountability that moves us into conversations, both at the Capitol and across the state, which build solid policy for West Virginia.
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The Small Communities, BIG Solutions Conference Awards Selection Committee is now seeking nominations of real southern West Virginia success stories.
Last fall, we kicked off our HubCAP (Communities of Achievement Program) in six communities working on the Mon Forest Towns initiative: Cowen, Elkins, Franklin, Marlinton, Petersburg and White Sulphur Springs.