By Robert Bordelon
Before singing a round of "Signed, Sealed, Delivered" by Stevie Wonder, teachers from across the state watched as Governor Jim Justice signed House Bill 4145, giving a raise to public employees across the state. With the 5 percent salary increase enacted in the bill, insurance rate freeze previously enacted, and the governor's executive order to form a task force to find solutions for increasing Public Employees Insurance Agency (PEIA) rates, students across the state will be returning to class Wednesday, March 7. Justice also announced the deadline for the Providing Real Opportunities For Maximizing In-State Student Excellence (PROMISE) scholarship would be extended.
"I am so proud of West Virginia's education employees," said West Virginia Education Association President Dale Lee. "Without them, today's agreement would not have happened. They stood in solidarity – 55 strong – and each day it was clear their resolve grew stronger. ... We must continue to make strides in those areas if we are to attract the best and brightest into the profession and to allow us to retain our highly qualified employees. Teachers' working conditions are students' learning conditions, and we must continue to make them better for everyone involved."
Read more in the Wednesday, March 7, edition of The West Virginia Daily News.
To read a copy of House Bill 4145, visit http://www.wvlegislature.gov/Bill_Text_HTML/2018_SESSIONS/RS/bills/HB4145%20SUB%20ENR.pdf