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Legislative panel holds question-and-answer session on flood recovery

Members of a West Virginia legislative committee that were earlier miffed about several no-shows by state employees to talk about flood recovery efforts say several people will now appear before the lawmakers Thursday for a question-and-answer session. (WCHS/WVAH)

Members of a West Virginia legislative committee that were earlier miffed about several no-shows by state employees to talk about flood recovery efforts said several people will now appear before the lawmakers for a question-and-answer session.

The Legislature’s Joint Committee on Government and Finance will meet at 9 a.m. Thursday in the Senate Judiciary Room, according to a news release from the state Senate. Beginning coverage of the meeting can be viewed below.

Scheduled to appear before the committee are Josh Jarrell, former Department of Commerce counsel and state Development Office employee; Andrew Mihallik, program specialist with RISE West Virginia; and Brian Abraham, general counsel for the Governor’s Office.

A subpoena also has been issued for Mary Jo Thompson, a former Development Office employee, to appear before the committee, the news release said.

Lawmakers had expressed concern when Thompson and Russell Tarry did not appear as scheduled June 26 to talk about RISE West Virginia 2016 flood recovery efforts. The two employees had resigned from the Development Office several days before the scheduled testimony.

Abraham, the general counsel for the Governor's Office, claimed that lawmakers knew civilian National Guard employee Jeff Wood had the information and that he would speak to the committee in place of Tarry and Thompson. Several lawmakers sharply disagreed with Abraham’s assertion, saying that his statement was false.

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