Governor Jim Justice announced a $1 million investment for the Center for Economic and Community Development for the African American community of Appalachia
Black Leaders Say That's Not Enough
Governor Jim Justice announced a $1 million investment for the Center for Economic and Community Development for the African American community of Appalachia to be housed at Marshall University during his 2023 State of the State address. The center, which will be run through Marshall University, aims to provide research and data infrastructure to help Black businesses in West Virginia get up and running.
Delegate Shawn Hornbuckle, one of three Black lawmakers in the West Virginia legislature and a graduate of Marshall University, brought the idea to the Justice administration with Dr. Alan Letton of Letton Consulting. Hornbuckle gave his support for the center, stating that it would serve as a model that could be extended to other underserved communities in the state, particularly in the southern coalfields.
However, the announcement was met with minimal applause from the crowd. The Governor directed the crowd to offer Delegate Hornbucke a standing ovation while the idea and need for investment in African American was met with silence.
Concerns have been raised that the investment is small compared to the $600 million in American Rescue Plan (ARPA) funding that Governor Justice announced would go towards an investment fund and water and sewer projects. WV State NAACP Vice President, Katonya Hart, pointed out that minorities in West Virginia, particularly Black West Virginians, face much higher poverty rates than the rest of the population, with one in three living in poverty and that the Black community needs significant funding, beyond the one million dollar investment.
Despite this, Delegate Hornbuckle expressed trust in Governor Justice to deliver the funding for the new center and said that the Governor mentioned ARPA when they met on Tuesday, the 10th of January. It should be noted that the $1 million investment for the Center for Economic and Community Development for the African American community of Appalachia is only .075 percent of the $1.335 billion West Virginia received in ARPA funds, and the only funding that the Governor has announced publicly designated to the Black community.
Additionally, data from the Herb Henderson Office of Minority Affairs (HHOMA), who in partnership with the Office of Governor Jim Justice, traveled to all 55 West Virginia counties for a listening tour focused on how the ARPA funding could address the needs of the community, remains a mystery.
Delegate Hornbuckle stated that he was unaware of the mission of the Herb Henderson Office to acquire this input for ARPA funding.
Sign up for our newsletter
Get the latest headlines from Black by God right in your inbox weekly.
More in Civics from Black by God
Community leader wants funds used to improve housing, health, workforce, economic and social service coordination
Taking from the poor to give to the rich.
The voice and vision speaks to the agony of the age in the power of NOW!
West Virginia ARPA funds should be allocated based on percentages of the total number of people living in poverty.
How CARES Act funding can change the trajectory for so many West Virginians.
BBG’s Community Partner Mountain State Spotlight explains.
Under the agreement with the state, a county would be able to spend their entire share of opioid settlements on jail bills. Public health experts say incarceration leads to more overdoses and recommend other strategies
Opinion by Donna Willis
OPINION By Donna Willis
Commentary By Jacki Mulay: A Lesson In Hair Controversy
OPINION by Charleston City Council Candidate Malyka Knapp-Smith
These students are fighting back. Aaron Reedy and Lonnie Medley, Morgantown High school seniors, attend a protest at the Monongalia County Board of Education building.
OPINION BY DONNA WILLIS ON SENATOR JOE MANCHIN THE THIRD
West Virginia Education Officials fail to address unfair Black suspension rate, “school to prison” pipeline continues unabated.
West Virginia ignored recommendations for fixing racial disparities in public school discipline
Community leaders aren’t convinced yet another report is the answer
The 1974 textbook war a precursor to the conflict around critical race theory PERVERTING THE CHILDREN
We are going to lose the United States of America.
Del. Danielle Walker reflects on Juneteenth as City of Morgantown issues proclamation recognizing day of commemoration
Honoring History and The Walker Family
An Open Letter To Senators Rucker, Azinger, Sypolt, Karnes, Maynard and Delegates Pritt, Smith, Tully, Longanacre, G. Ward, Maynor, Crouse, Clark, Horst, and Hanna
The Tuesday Morning Group requests allocation of American Rescue Plan Act Funds to support initiatives in West Virginia’s census tracts with poverty rates 20% or higher
As West Virginia’s crisis of jail overcrowding and rising incarceration rates continue, justice-impacted people and criminal law reform advocates rallied Tuesday at the State Capitol on various pieces of legislation currently under consideration.
West Virginia will continue to have a Legislature that looks less and less like the demographics of the state as a whole, with women and people of color further underrepresented in House and Senate chambers, and with white men over-represented by a factor of 185 percent.
When I bring up the fact that Black West Virginians make up less than 4% of the state’s population but 19% of the non-violent cannabis arrests, they’re not trying to hear it." ~ Rusty Williams
West Virginia has $1.335 billion from American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 to spend in the next four years KANAWHA COUNTY: $34,598,499 MONONGALIA COUNTY: $20,513,893 MCDOWELL COUNTY: $3,423,255 CHARLESTON: $36,801,358 BECKLEY: $7,698,933 JANE LEW: $160,000 KERMIT: $150,000 OCEANA: $500,000
"..be able to swat down a bad-faith argument before it begins can go a long way in centering the most important topics." ~ Senator Owens Brown.
Hundreds in attendance to hear from speakers who shared their experience and expertise on policy issues impacting Black West Virginians and why it’s important for Black West Virginians to participate in the policymaking process.
On Jan. 17 nine people were arrested during a protest in downtown Charleston. The protesters were calling on Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., to pass the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Act and the Freedom to Vote Act.
"People of color need policies to thrive in West Virginia. We protest in the streets and go to court for things we are not protected by. Black people are always fighting for all and never make those elected officials accountable." Del. Walker
West Virginians and New Yorkers Demand The Passage of Voting Rights Act In Historic Black Church In Charleston West Virginia
Policy & Process
In November 2021 Black By God published an article “Young Women ‘Match Harassment’ at Abortion Clinic with Motivational Messages” 🗞 In 2022 they share that story on the WV Capitol steps.
Black West Virginians must reconsider our support of Senator Joe Manchin who blocked several pieces of legislation that could have benefited Black people.
As Senator Manchin continues to negotiate with his colleagues in Washington, our families here at home continue to suffer.
Impression of the presentation regarding the Construction of Nuclear Power Plants In West Virginia by Samuel Moss
By Folk Reporter and Charleston Native Samuel Moss - Husband, Father, Inventor
We know there is no real democracy when the public is not actively participating in the legislative process. #useyourvoice That’s why we’re calling upon BBG readers to speak loudly through your online platforms to ensure your representatives still hear how their policy decisions will impact your life.
YOUNG, BLACK, & GIFTED in West Virginia Policy
OUR MOST READ 2021 STORY West Virginia Governor Jim Justice’s Petty Pursuit Of Greenbrier East’s Boys Basketball Coaching Job
"Justice has to take everything personally because otherwise, he’d have to live in the world of facts, and those are rarely on his side."
Folk Reporters And Survey Input Needed
As we plan for a curious 2022 Legislative Session. A look back at the 2021 West Virginia Black policy agenda with BBG Folk Reporter Kate Jordan.
How public tensions of African American leaders openly advanced debate and provide forums for philosophical disagreement.
Republican Legislators Recognize Racism and White Supremacy In West Virginia.
Sen. Capito’s Lack of Support for the Freedom to Vote Act & Spread of Misinformation to West Virginian Constituents
November 5, 2021, a coalition of West Virginia Faith Leaders, Community Organizers, and Activist from across West Virginia and the country held a nonviolent demonstration blocking the entrance of Senator Joe Manchin’s Charleston office.
The window of opportunity for action on Cannabis Reform in West Virginia is wide open! Change for West Virginians is more possible more than ever before.
Much like Nero fiddling while Rome was on fire, far too many of our politicians are more interested in self-preservation than preserving our democracy.
Gun violence is the leading cause of death and disability among Black males ages 15-34. Communities of color, specifically Black neighborhoods, families, and youth, are disproportionately impacted by community violence and trauma.
West Virginia doesn’t need qualified immunity. We need assurance that our officers will truly protect and serve our communities.
While it was exciting that the WVDP finally developed the diversity caucuses, we left the first meeting with the executive committee deflated.
“We’ve had no input on this plan,” said Hollis Lewis, co-chair of the party’s recently formed Affirmative Action Committee.
West Virginia has the microphone. Use it!
How can we help the Class Of 2021 in West Virginia as they begin their lives in the adult world of decision-making?
#wvleg #wvpol #Blackpolicy
Something To Celebrate In West Virginia
As crossover day and the close of the WV Legislature is approaching, Black By God Folk Reporter Kate Jordan shares how her session began.
Enjoy Our Sunday Cartoon.