Faculty and students who are opposed argue that the move puts the state's flagship university at risk of offering a subpar education, especially in terms of producing graduates who can compete in the international workforce.
“Let us all come together so we can go as one and move another place instead of flooding out every year because we’re getting older,” says one resident of Pecan Acres, in Pointe Coupee Parish. “We’ll be better off. We won’t got to worry about worrying when the storms come.”
West Virginia's economy has long been reliant on coal. But as coal jobs dry up, many are looking for jobs beyond coal.
It's a rough time for coal company CEOs: Coal in the US it’s now in a precipitous decline, undercut by cheaper natural gas from fracking and concerns about its dangers to climate and health. But it's an even rougher time for Don Blankenship, the former CEO of Massey Energy, who could spend years in prison for his role in the 2010 Upper Big Branch mine disaster.
The US is making major strides in reducing juvenile incarceration, but West Virginia has bucked the trend. Its incarceration rates remain much higher thanks to an overwhelmed and underfunded system that can't give troubled children the support they need instead of jail time.
Fracking is already a controversial topic, with environmentalists charging that the technique could ruin drinking water, along with other pollution problems. But now, radioactive waste from drilling the wells is raising a whole new environmental concern.
Republicans in the U.S. Senate this week have indicated they'll allow votes on two bills — one that would reform the country's immigration system and another that would provide for background checks in all commercial gun sales. Whether they'll pass, though, remains to be seen.