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WVA’s Trump-a-like Jim Justice brown-noses powerful self-interest groups at private resort

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Photo: Jim Justice/governor.wv.gov

West Virginia governor and former coal magnate Jim Justice has been using his own private resort to peddle influence with some of the state’s most powerful interest groups, including representatives from the coal industry, a ProPublica and Charleston Gazette-Mail investigation has found.

The West Virginia Coal Association and the state’s Chamber of Commerce have hosted their annual meetings at Justice’s Greenbrier Resort for “decades,” the outlets report, as the resort has become a key meeting place for industry and power players in the state.

Since Justice became governor in 2017, the two groups have increasingly picked up the tab for state officials to attend meetings, with the coal association paying $3,600 last year for officials to stay at Greenbrier.

After floods in 2016–which were supercharged by climate change–damaged Greenbrier and caused a costly insurance battle, Justice also used his influence to help the struggling resort by putting it on a list of federal “opportunity zones” that are eligible for tax breaks.

More at ProPublica

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