Morrisey Reviews First Reforms as WV Attorney General

HNN Staff
Attorney General Patrick Morrisey
Attorney General Patrick Morrisey

(Berkeley Springs) West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey spoke before a group of county chairs and other leaders at the winter meeting of the State Republican Party at the Best Western, Berkeley Springs on Saturday afternoon. 

Morrisey reviewed his first eight weeks in office and reviewed progress on his campaign promises, including dismantling the trinket program instituted by his predecessor, former Attorney General Darrell McGraw. 

"The trinket distribution has been dissolved," Morrisey said to applause. 

Ethics reforms top agenda

Morrisey also noted that he has advocated other ethics reforms.  For example, he noted that McGraw had used up to three-quarters of a million dollars of office funds to advertise during campaign years.

"No advertising with my likeness or name on it during election season will be paid for it by the office," Morrisey said, also noting that he would not be using government cars for any parades in the coming years.

Morrisey also reviewed his determination to put a more competitive bidding process into play for the hiring of outside counsel.  Morrisey said that he will be going to each county's bar association to find qualified outside counsel, thereby opening up the process to give every qualified, interested lawyer a chance to compete in the bidding process.

Going after excessive regulations

But for this particular audience, Morrisey's determination to review federal regulations proved to be the most popular part of his speech.  Morrisey ran on a campaign platform in 2012 that made no secret of his concern about the effect of government regulations on the West Virginia economy.

Announcing that "federal overreach stops at our border," Morrisey vowed to fight federal regulations that run afoul of the rule of law. 

Further, he said that, after the first 100 days of his tenure as Attorney General, he intends to have his office review all regulations involving the manufacturing, contracting, and service industry sectors of the West Virginia economy. 

"Our office has no control over tax policy, but we can offer legal opinions on these regulations," Morrisey said.

"West Virginians badly need an injection of freedom in our state and federal goverments," concluded Morrisey.  "Our state motto is "Mountaineers are always free."  But it has to mean something.  How do we expand our freedom?  How do we create jobs?  We have to change our state's reputation in order to encourage business development."