Editor’s Note: During the next several days, The Register-Herald will publish a daily story featuring in-depth interviews we conducted with candidates seeking the office of Governor of West Virginia. Each of the 16 people who filed were issued an invitation to appear before our editorial board, and 14 of those came to Beckley to meet with us and discuss some of the key issues in West Virginia. The stories will appear in the order in which the candidates were interviewed. Today’s story focuses on Democratic candidate Arne Moltis, of South Charleston.
1 — It certainly appears that Marcellus shale regulation will remain a major topic of interest for the next several years. What are the key features that you see that need to be included in West Virginia law to best serve the interests of all the parties involved?
I’d like to give you the background on this Marcellus shale. It’s another opportunity that we have missed. I think somebody has been bribed at the Legislature not to do it this time around. The bribery situation is just awful. I’ve heard that out-of-state trucks are there getting the oil, etc. That’s an example of bribery. You heard of the big tent there. I don’t know if you know that the real reason behind that is to... There’s a bar at the governor’s house/mansion. To see the legislators stumbling around drunk, they put it up so nobody could see them. I didn’t even know at the Legislature there was a bar until one of the former employees of AEP told me there’s a bar. Guys even sleep over from AEP because they are too drunk to drive. It is just amazing the things that go on out there.
The shale situation is another example of bribery. They could have taken up the case. They needed to approve $2 million so we could start the paperwork. It’s another case of bribery, the same as AEP. It seems that our legislators are easily bribed, and all of the companies that go into the capital know that.