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State lawmakers create 'Turn up Tips' campaign

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Several state lawmakers have decided to step up and help area businesses affected by the Charleston chemical spill by urging people to "Turn up the Tips."

Lawmakers promoting the bipartisan group "Turn up the Tips" campaign include Charleston city council members; Sen. Chris Walters, R-Putnam, Delegate Doug Skaff, D-Kanawha and Delegate Eric Nelson, R-Kanwaha. 

The campaign to increase tips for local restaurants affected by the "do not use" order on water was launched to help West Virginians who have been forced out of work for the past several days.

Walters said he has experienced first-hand how tough serving tables can be, as he was a server in high school and college.

"Servers aren't just high school children— they have children and mouths to feed," Walters said about the profession. "This campaign will increase the amount of tips to those families who have lost wages."

Walters said the campaign will be for surrounding areas affected by the ban on water, not just the Charleston area.

He said he was proud, so far, of West Virginians who have stepped up to help their fellow residents.

"West Virginians are being West Virginians and helping each other out," Walter said.

Residents were not only utilizing water sites, but also bringing empty containers of water to give to other residents looking to fill their water supply.

Walters said lawmakers would look into legislation to see how the chemical spill happened, if legislation could be made to prevent it from happening again or if someone "dropped the ball."

He said chemical facilities banked along any type of water source would be required to report to area water companies the chemical they are working with and "create an emergency plan to prevent this from happening again."