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MAP TO PROSPERITY: The times, they are a-changin'

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  • Join the dialogue: The times, they are a-changin'More>>

  • Map to Prosperity

    Map to Prosperity

    Thursday, January 2 2014 11:59 AM EST2014-01-02 16:59:08 GMT
    "Map to Prosperity" is a long-term project of The State Journal that will deeply examine government and business in West Virginia — both the perceptions and the reality.
    "Map to Prosperity" is a long-term project of The State Journal that will deeply examine government and business in West Virginia — both the perceptions and the reality.
  • GovernmentGovernmentMore>>

  • National Preparedness Month encourages residents to plan response to weather, other emergencies

    National Preparedness Month encourages residents to plan response to weather, other emergencies

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 10:26 AM EDT2014-09-02 14:26:18 GMT
    National Preparedness Month, celebrated each September, is a nationwide program hosted by the Ready Campaign to encourage households, businesses and communities to prepare and plan for emergencies. 
    The West Virginia Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management is participating in National Preparedness Month, now in its 11th year. National Preparedness Month, celebrated each September, is a nationwide program hosted by the Ready Campaign to encourage households, businesses and communities to prepare and plan for emergencies. 
  • UPDATE: Two appointments made to commission tasked with studying chemical spill bill

    UPDATE: Two appointments made to commission tasked with studying chemical spill bill

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 9:43 AM EDT2014-09-02 13:43:38 GMT
    Senate Bill 373, a bill drafted in response to the Jan. 9 chemical leak, establishes a commission to do studies and report back to the Legislature. Senate President Jeff Kessler, D-Marshall, made the first appointment to that board on Aug. 29. Kessler appointed Dr. Rahul Gupta, Executive Director of the Kanawha Charleston Health Department.
    Senate Bill 373, a bill drafted in response to the Jan. 9 chemical leak, establishes a commission to do studies and report back to the Legislature. Senate President Jeff Kessler, D-Marshall, made the first appointment to that board on Aug. 29. Kessler appointed Dr. Rahul Gupta, Executive Director of the Kanawha Charleston Health Department.
  • Treating toxic water may cost New Castle, Delaware $1M

    Treating toxic water may cost New Castle, Delaware $1M

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 7:09 AM EDT2014-09-02 11:09:22 GMT
    Officials have focused on the longtime use of fire-fighting foams at the nearby Delaware Air National Guard Base at New Castle Airport. Those foams contain perfluorinated chemicals, or PFCs, which are an emerging health concern for drinking water supplies nationwide.
    Officials have focused on the longtime use of fire-fighting foams at the nearby Delaware Air National Guard Base at New Castle Airport. Those foams contain perfluorinated chemicals, or PFCs, which are an emerging health concern for drinking water supplies nationwide.

Sen. Brooks McCabe, D-Kanawha, is managing member and broker of West Virginia Commercial LLC. He has been involved in commercial and investment real estate for more than 30 years, and he also is general partner of McCabe Land Company LP. He has served in the West Virginia Senate since 1998, and is a special project consultant to The State Journal.

The West Virginia of tomorrow will not be the West Virginia of yesterday, or even of today. 

To use one of retired banker Holmes Morrison's favorite quotes to cite from Jack Welch, "If the world around you is changing faster than you are, then the end is in sight." 

The State Journal, starting with this issue, will be running a multi-issue series titled West Virginia's "Map to Prosperity." In these upcoming articles, Jim Ross and George Hohmann, with support from The State Journal staff, will attempt to raise the level of discussion about what West Virginia needs to do to keep up with the ever-changing world around it. 

The discussion, at times, may verge on the uncomfortable, for change is never easy. The comments and observations will be coming from a broad array of interviews with key opinion leaders from around the state. The State Journal believes that West Virginia is approaching a pivotal point in its history and needs to rethink what it has done in the past and determine what is relevant for the future. There will be no easy answers. 

But one thing is for sure: If West Virginia is to become the best that it can be, a new game plan is needed. In that game plan, the old ways of doing business will become a memory of the past. The budget will be transformed into a lean and efficient use of taxpayer dollars and funded programs will survive on their own merits. The expansion of the economy, improvement of our communities and our residents' quality of life will be the drivers. 

As Ted Boettner has said, "The big test of government is not its size, but whether it is making investments in the things that really create good-paying jobs and communities we all want to live in." 

That being said,  a professor of business, director of the BB&T Center for American Capitalism and a distinguished fellow in economics at the Marshall University Center for Business and Economic Research, Cal Kent has astutely observed, "We are a high-need, low financial capacity state." 

Therein lies the challenge: Can we, as a state, redefine what state government does and how it does it, all within the financial confines of tight fiscal policies? 

The State Journal hopes to engage its readers and the public at large in this most important dialogue. Perhaps together we can make a difference. As Bob Dylan said, "The times they are a-changin'."

Let's be part of the solution and define our future together.