FILE - Road work, infrastructure, construction

(The Center Square) – West Virginia lawmakers approved legislation to promote business development for industrial plants and facilities and bills to appropriate $150 million for road projects.

Each bill passed both chambers of the General Assembly with bipartisan support during a brief one-day special session during interim committee meetings.

Senate Bill 4001 would allow businesses in two districts to resell renewable energy that they develop. It would only allow the businesses to resell within its site. The bill is meant to encourage the continued development and expansion of industrial plants and facilities by granting easier access to energy.

The bill passed with an amendment that only included minor changes to reflect the interests of certain stakeholders, which included the manufacturing industry, the power development industry and the coal industry. The amendment was introduced by Sen. Eric Tarr, R-Putnam.

“This is a really powerful economic bill for West Virginia and I urge adoption of the amendment,” Tarr said on the Senate floor.

Lawmakers also passed two bills that transfer $150 million of surplus funding to the state road fund for Fiscal Year 2023. The bulk of the money, $125 million, would be spent to pave and resurface more than 2,000 miles of secondary roads in West Virginia and the remaining $25,000 would be for equipment.

Gov. Jim Justice, who convened the special session, is expected to sign all three bills into law.

Staff Reporter

Tyler Arnold reports on Virginia and West Virginia for The Center Square. He previously worked for the Cause of Action Institute and has been published in Business Insider, USA TODAY College, National Review Online and the Washington Free Beacon.