Local reps vote on veterans issue

The Charleston Gazette reported on March 2 that the West Virginia Senate voted down a measure – that had been approved in the House – to direct $1.5 million of state lottery profits to construction projects to benefit veterans.

Delegate Isaac Sponaugle (D-Pendleton) and Delegate Don Perdue (D-Wayne) sponsored an amendment to direct the money to veterans projects.

Sponaugle is quoted in the Gazette:

“We talk about appreciation. It’s time to put our money where our mouth is,”

In a vote by the full House, the measure passed by a margin of 67-30. Delegate Bill Hartman and Delegate Denise Campbell, representing Pocahontas and Randolph counties, both voted for the veterans construction money.

But the measure hit a dead end when it hit the State Senate, going down by a vote of 29-5. Republican State Senator Robert Karnes, representing the 11th District, voted with 28 of his colleagues to defeat the veterans construction amendment.

The Gazette reported that Senator John Unger (D-Berkeley), criticized the repeal of the amendment, saying it amounted to “political theater.”

“Instead of just giving out certificates or pats on the back, we were going to do something of substance for these people,” Unger said. “Are we just pandering to the veterans?”

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