Jobs. Jobs. Jobs. Jim Justice. It was one of the few policy position Jim Justice was pretty clear about in the 2016 Election. It's a pretty safe thing for a politicians to promise. Everyone either wants a job, or wants a better job. Well, revenue may be up, but according to Google's Unemployment Tracker, Unemployment went from 5.3 in January of 2017 when Justice was inaugurated to 5.4 in March of 2018 (the latest data Google provides). But there is one job Jim Justice has created that he can't seem to fill.
Back in early June, Governor Justice requested the resignation of Commerce Secretary Woody Thrasher over lack of progress the Rise WV program had been making providing homes to victims of the historic 2016 WV Floods. Commerce Secretary is a fairly prestigious position in state government. It's the second person listed in Governor Justice's Cabinet and according to The Intermountain it comes with a salary of over $85,000 a year. Qualified candidates should be flooding in from all over the state, and yet according to the Governor himself during an interview with WV MetroNews' Hoppy Kercheval the search has been "harder than expected."
If anyone knows a charismatic, knowledgeable leader for West Virginia’s economic growth efforts, drop Gov. Jim Justice a line.
“We’re probably not near as close as I’d like to be,” Justice said today on MetroNews’ “Talkline.”
“To tell you the truth, if you’d be interested, I’d surely love to sit down and talk with you about it. But if you’re not, if you could send me a couple of names of people that are out there in your listening audience today, I’m looking for a really good person.”
But, he acknowledged, “We’re struggling finding that person.”
Justice has plenty of contacts in the state business community, and he probably had some hand picked favorites he offered the job to shortly after Thrasher's resignation, and yet so far, no takers. Justice has resorted to soliciting applications for a cabinet level position that pays double the state's average income on a talk radio show.