Eric Nelson (R)
Education: George Washington High School; Washington & Lee University; Venture Capital Institute
Occupation: Business owner, financial management and consulting
Q: What would you do to ensure that West Virginia protects communities from adverse environmental and public health impacts of the rising natural gas industry?
A: To protect our communities and public health, we must rely on the highly trained and dedicated inspectors and personnel at the Department of Environmental Protection, Division of Highways, and other state agencies. Each of these agencies has a proven track record of protecting the public and enforcing our state’s safety and environmental laws.
Q: What legislation would you push to diversify West Virginia’s economy?
A: Our largest driver for diversifying the W.Va. economy would be the elimination of our tax on inventory, machinery and equipment. These taxes make W.Va. an outlier nationally and uncompetitive in fighting for jobs. Let’s continue the path of the last four years under Republican leadership to right-size government, reduce burdensome regulations, improve legal reform and restructure our tax base.
Q: How should West Virginia fund PEIA?
A: PEIA is currently funded through general and special revenue. An expanding economy and job growth will continue to generate the necessary resources to fund PEIA. In addition, lets work to improve health care access at a more affordable cost.
Daily Mail Opinion:
Q: Do you support the current practice of “civil asset forfeiture,” whereby state law enforcement can seize property from citizens even if they are never charged with a crime?
A: No, I do not support civil asset forfeiture unless an individual has been charged with or has committed an illegal activity.
Q: Should West Virginia join the 43 other states that allow students to attend public charter schools?
A: Yes, I favor most any approach that will improve student achievement in W.Va.
Q: Should the severance tax on natural gas (currently at 5 percent) be raised, lowered, or kept the same?
A: W.Va.'s severance taxes are already near the highest in the nation and substantially higher than our neighboring states. A policy of maintaining or lowering this tax will encourage additional development, more jobs and greater economic growth and diversity. This, in turn, will generate additional tax revenues.