(Editor's Note: The Wetzel Chronicle mailed questions to all political candidates in races of local significance. Their responses will be printed in the April 28 and May 5 editions of the Wetzel Chronicle in a simple question and answer format.)
While both are unopposed in th primary election, Incumbent Republican Wm. Roger Romine and Democrat Charlie Delauder are both on the ballot for the House of Delegates, sixth district.
Delauder believes government should work for us not us work for government.It is his intention to bring excellent service to the voters of this district.
He has lived in Middlebourne for 37 years while his wife, Pam, has been a resident of Tyler County for most of her life.She grew up in Meadville at the Meadville Mall.They have two daughters. Kristin is married to Noah Childers and currently lives in Lewisburg, W.Va., while Noah goes to medical school there. Their youngest daughter, Kara, is a junior at Alderson Broaddus College and a member of the Battler Volleyball team.
Delauder was born and raised in Barbour County, graduated from Alderson Broaddus College, and moved to Tyler County to teach. He has a master's degree from West Virginia University. He taught 33 years in Tyler County and served three years as president of the West Virginia Education Association.During that term he visited almost every county in West Virginia to see their school systems and talk with WVEA members.
Education is vital to our state to move forward.He is an example of how education can move the state forward.His parents instilled in Delauder a desire for education.His father was only able to finish the fifth grade before he went to work to help support his 16 brothers and sisters.His mother was a high school graduate.They both taught me that hard work was the only way to survive. They were both veterans of World War II.
Delauder is also a small business owner of a home remodeling company.
Romine has served in the House of Delegates representing the Sixth District since 2000.
Born in Doddridge County, Romine and his late wife, Judith Davis Romine, have six children, Rhonda, Lynn, Tara, Kim, William II, and Jill. A Methodist by faith, he lives just outside of Sistersville.
Romine has a Master's Degree from West Virginia University and Bachelor of Science degree from Salem College. He is a former classroom teacher, principal, and central office administrator.
He is a member of the American Association of School Administrators, Elks Lodge, Lions International, Masonic Lodge of Sistersville, Parkersburg Shrine, West Virginia Association of School Administrators, and former member of the West Virginia Education Association. He is the former vice-chair of the Northern Panhandle Private Industry Council and president of the West Virginia Association of Retired School Employees of Tyler County.Romine has served in the House of Delegates representing the Sixth District since 2000.
He is a member of the American Association of School Administrators, Elks Lodge, Lions International, Masonic Lodge of Sistersville, Parkersburg Shrine, West Virginia Association of School Administrators, and former member of the West Virginia Education Association. He is the former vice-chair of the Northern Panhandle Private Industry Council and president of the West Virginia Association of Retired School Employees of Tyler County.
What can you do, through the delegate's position, to help stimulate our economy, create more jobs, and attract new business to the area?
Delauder: No one can understand the frustration individuals feel at the loss of employment unless they have been in that circumstance.The days of having a company that will come here to provide 500 jobs have mostly passed us by. I believe that job creation is best accomplished by private industry and small business.As a small business owner I know what it takes to make payroll and provide the quality of service to customers.I would work with small business owners to provide them with the necessary tools to develop long term employment. This could be accomplished through targeted tax credits for creation and sustainability of jobs. Many times we have given tax credits for industry only to have them take the credit and then abuse us by pulling the jobs or completely leaving the state. Employers that do this must be held accountable.
Further I believe that we could use our vocational schools to provide individuals with the opportunity to be trained in another occupation. These schools could be utilized more fully in the evenings and on weekends to provide opportunities to our unemployed and underemployed. I would also use Workforce West Virginia to provide for retraining grants.
I would also propose that we provide employment to individuals through government programs to improve our communities.These would be targeted jobs to improve our parks, cities, and wildlife areas. Small cities can not afford to provide the additional help that is necessary to keep their communities as beautiful as they would like, this would be an opportunity for them to have extra help.
Romine: Support legislation which would stimulate our economy. As a member of the minority party I can work constructively with members of the majority party to provide a united effort to initiate and work through the political process issues that would better serve our area and state in regards to economy, jobs, and businesses.
What do you believe is the number one priority in terms of infrastructure development in your district? What would you do to facilitate its improvement?
Delauder: In the twenty first century no one should be without clean water.Clean drinkable water and pollution control are two major infrastructure improvements that need to be undertaken for our areas.I believe our public service districts should be provided the funding necessary to provide all our citizens with these services.We could provide this funding through the issuance of clean water and sewage bonds. These projects are expensive but combining these projects would be more cost effective.These projects would also provide needed employment.
I also believe that we must work to provide each home with high speed internet; this also would be infrastructure improvement.Many of the jobs of the future have not been thought of yet, but high speed internet will be necessary for those jobs. The jobs of today, and more so tomorrow, will depend on the availability of this feature and we need to work to provide this to our citizens.
Romine: It is difficult to identify any one particular priority. So many areas of infrastructure go hand-in-hand. Certainly roads and transportations, water, investment interest in businesses, minimize taxes and regulation on businesses and industry.
As previously mentioned, I could work collaboratively with all elected officials to present a unified force.
What would you identify as your top priority and how, specifically, will you work to achieve it?
Delauder: My top priority would be jobs. As I stated in question one, there are many opportunities to address this issue. Targeted tax credits, education opportunities for the unemployed and providing the jobs necessary are some of the tools I would use to accomplish these goals.I do not possess all of the answers that are needed to deal with this issue but I am a very good listener and will listen to all advice that is offered to make our state the best it can be.
Romine: Prevent government from implementing burdensome requirements and regulations on business and industry (i.e. Cap and Trade).
To achieve this requires my vote as a delegate and hopefully the persuasion of as many individual politicians and groups to become involved in this effort.