Under Governor Justice’s leadership, West Virginia continues to experience an era of unprecedented success and prosperity.
After inheriting a budget deficit of $500 million, Governor Justice led the state to a series of consistent budget surpluses by using his lifelong experience as a businessman to make West Virginia a more business-friendly state and supporting the energy industry.
At the same time, West Virginia hit record unemployment rates. The state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 3.7% in March 2022, breaking the all-time record for the lowest recorded unemployment rate in West Virginia history for the 6th consecutive month.
West Virginia is finally competing on the world stage and bringing world-class businesses to our state, as several major economic development announcements this year show. Nucor Corporation announced that it has chosen Mason County as the location for a state-of-the-art sheet metal plant. This record investment will exceed $2.7 billion, making it the largest in West Virginia history, as well as the largest investment Nucor has ever made. GreenPower Motor Company announced an agreement with the state to manufacture zero-emission, all-electric school buses in South Charleston, creating hundreds of new jobs and millions of dollars in economic impact in West Virginia. Owens & Minor, a Fortune 500 company that provides medical supplies, will expand on a deal it previously struck with WVU Medicine and create more than 125 jobs at a healthcare compounding and supply center in Morgantown. Omnis Building Technologies will build a $40 million, 150,000 square foot factory in Bluefield to manufacture building materials that will revolutionize the future of homebuilding, creating 150 to 300 jobs. Klöckner Pentaplast has announced a multi-million dollar expansion of its West Virginia plant. Additionally, PepsiCo is building two new distribution facilities this year, representing a combined investment of $32.5 million, while creating 185 jobs in West Virginia.
The Governor of Justice also recently announced that West Virginia achieved the second highest export growth rate of any state in the nation for 2021.
Meanwhile, the Governor’s Roads To Prosperity program is the state’s largest investment in road maintenance and improvement ever; after 50 years of neglecting its roads, the state has committed more than $2 billion to repair them. Teachers and state employees received their two largest pay increases, and a third pay increase was offered. The state’s Rainy Day Fund is now over $1 billion — another record — and its public pension funds are better funded than they have been in decades. Thanks to Gov. Justice, veterans now live in West Virginia tax-free, and seniors are not subject to state Social Security taxes. The governor also led West Virginia through a once-in-a-century pandemic, protecting the state’s most vulnerable citizens.
People are more excited than ever to be in West Virginia. From April 2010 to July 2019, more than 43,000 people left the state. However, from 2020 to 2021, net migration is on the rise in West Virginia for the first time in decades, with more than 2,000 people moving to our state, making West Virginia one of the top states of the whole country in which people settle in percentage. base.
Increased investment in the state’s tourism efforts has skyrocketed visitation and intrigue in West Virginia. West Virginia was recently named one of the top 10 tourist areas in the world to visit by Lonely Planet; the only state to earn this prestigious distinction and the state was also recently selected as one of the best places to go by Condé Nast Traveler. West Virginia was also recently named one of CBS’ top destinations for family vacations in 2022.