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Wayne delegate earns leadership position on national committee

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Delegate Don Perdue, D-Wayne, has been named the co-chairman of the National Conference of State Legislatures' Health Committee, the West Virginia House of Delegates announced Oct. 10.

The Health Committee is one of 10 committees that deals with both state and state-federal issues. The group is nationally recognized as a lobbying force representing states' interests before Congress, the White House and federal agencies. Standing committees are composed of legislators and legislative staff who are appointed by the leadership of their respective legislatures. This year is the first time in NCSL history committee chairs will serve two-year terms as opposed to one-year terms.

"NCSL has benefited from Delegate Perdue's expertise over the years," said NCSL President and New Hampshire representative Teri Norelli. "His participation will continue to ensure that the states' agenda is carried out in Washington."

The Health Committee works to educate Congress and federal agencies about states' concerns regarding developments in federal health initiatives and programs and grants to states. The committee also serves as a forum for legislators and legislative staff to learn about and share information regarding health programs and health policy initiatives in other states. In the past, the Health Committee has studied and worked on issues such as Medicare prescription drug coverage, Medicaid, health care cost containment and access and public health and prevention. Perdue noted the House Health Committee in the West Virginia Legislature has dealt with those issues as well.

Perdue, a pharmacist, said he looks forward to working with the committee and advocating for states.

"I am honored to help lead the NCSL Health Committee in advocating for state and to continue to bring invaluable information back home," Perdue said in a statement. "Being able to bring state concerns to the steps of our nation's capitol in integral to any success we may enjoy with the terrific challenge providing health care to our citizens represents.

"Good policy commands that every state's concerns are fairly represented," Perdue continued. "I look forward to this opportunity and pray I may live up to its promise."