Increasing jobs in West Virginia

If West Virginia legislators about to begin their annual regular session need any reason to pursue economic development initiatives, a new national population report provides it.

From 2018 to 2019, the nation’s population increased by nearly 0.5%, or about 1.5 million people, the Census Bureau reports. Even though that is the slowest growth rate in a century, birth rates and influxes of people in nearly every state helped them gain population.

Nearly, but not all. In four states, deaths outnumbered births. They were Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont — and West Virginia. Too many people in our state lack confidence in the future to have children. Too few people want to come here.

Lack of good jobs is a key to that. Clearly, then, legislators need to do what they can to make the Mountain State more attractive to providers of good new jobs.