AND THEN AGAIN……….by Tamara Pettit

Just like  life, the only certainty in politics is change.    Leadership changes cause committee chair appointments to change. Kinda like you were making egg salad and you toss it all up to see where everyone will land and I would venture to say 3/4 of the delegates and senators are not happy with their lot.

****    There are four major committees and all legislation must pass through at least one, sometimes two prior to making to the full-floor of the house. On rare occassions I’ve heard of a bill being triple referenced but have never seen it

****Finance is the most important committee in both the House and the Senate and the Finance Chair is the second only to the speaker of the house or president of the senate in power in my opinion. (That’s not reflected on the charts, but in the way things are done.)    Judiciary is second in importance; Government Organization third and Education 4th.   Freshman legislators sometimes don’t realize that pecking order. The Education Committee used to be stacked with teachers who didn’t mind being besieged with mind numbing education bills.  I spent my first year on Education blissful until the teachers went on strike; we were the only Committee to work the weekends; and I developed ulcers on the inside of my mouth and down my throat due to stress.   Needless to say when I had the opportunity to move to Finance, I took it in a nanosecond.  .

………..I’ve frequently disagreed with Del. Pat McGeehan’s actions. He has made quite a reputation as being a headache to leadership  often being the only no vote when the tally was 99-1.  At one point he was banned from this own party caucus he was such as outcast.    In other words he was seen as a troublemaker.    My husband, who was executive vice president of legal at the now defunct Weirton Steel, used to tell me that management always spotted their biggest union trouble maker and gave them a management job.

………So I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised this session when I saw that Pat McGeehan is now  vice chair of Government organization.  He is now part of the Republican leadership. And we’ll see if he touts the Republican line.

……….His new position may increase the odds for passage of a bill McGeehan has sponsored  for Hancock County for several years.’  The video lottery legislation now gives  two per cent of the net terminal income to the county commission.   For years the cities have struggled to return that revenue or a portion of that revenue to the municipalities.   Finally, when days were good and the lottery dollars were flowing freely, the municipalities received 50 percent of the excess revenue when the net revenue reached $2 million.  Those days went away. The mark hits $2 milllion no more and the cities receive nothing/…………McGeehan’s Bill, HB   2298, passed out of House Government Organization on 1/26 and is now before Finance.  It needs to get on the agenda for consideration.     The Cities are working diligently with the sparse funding they have. They deserve this money and McGeehan deserves your support.  Send an e-mail or a text or do it the old fashioned way and make a phone call.