CAPITOL BEAT EXTRA: Delegates discuss their thoughts on the Work - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

CAPITOL BEAT EXTRA: Delegates discuss their thoughts on the Workplace Freedom Act

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CHARLESTON, WV (WVVA) On Thursday the Workplace Freedom Act passed in the senate by only one vote. And now as the bill moves to the house there is supposed to be contentious debates from legislators on both sides of the aisle.

"I think it's good for the state of West Virginia,” says Del. Marty Gearheart. “It gives people the ability to be free to work where they want to and employers the freedom to hire who they want to regardless of their membership in a group. Other states have found that enables them to be more successful and I think the same will happen here."

While many Republicans favor the Workplace Freedom Bill, giving workers the right to work without having to join a union, not everyone thinks it is the best choice for West Virginia.

"I think it's absolutely abysmal,” says Del. Clif Moore (D). “If I get a chance to vote on it, either committee or on the floor I'm definitely voting against it. It's been my experience based on my research and my own observations that Right-to-Work is not good for West Virginia. Not good at all. And those states that have enacted it haven't fared so well. So I just don't think it's good for working men and women in this state and their families. So definitely against it. Diametrically opposed to it."

But many lawmakers think this could be the first of many changes to help bring new industry to West Virginia.

"We've got to try something different to try to jump start our economy,” says Del. John O'Neal IV (R). “While I don't think Workplace Freedom is a magical bullet that's going to in it of itself change things, it's a tool it's part of the solution to just to try to do away with the status quo and to try something different, to see if we can make ourselves more attractive to business and industry.

If the bill is passed in the House it will move to Governor Tomblin's desk, who will have to sign it into law.

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