CHARLESTON, W.Va. – On Monday night, West Virginia Governor Jim Justice ended the employment of the state’s Secretary of Education and the Arts, Gayle Manchin.
Governor Justice released the following statement:
“We have not made a decision yet on legislation (HB 4006) to reorganize the Department of the Education and the Arts. Earlier today, Secretary Manchin asked the Chief of Staff, Mike Hall, about how she should approach this. She was told by the Chief of Staff to do nothing based upon my public comments this morning, and that my decision to veto or sign this bill has not been made. Later in the day, she decided to defy the Chief of Staff’s instructions and issued a press release. In her press release she offered to resign and remove any political cloud. If there weren’t any earlier political cloud, now there surely is one. She was very critical, made it political, and put me in a very, very bad position,” he said.
The Governor continued, “She was told that we accepted her resignation, she refused, and we terminated her. As I have been saying for the last several days, we are continuing to examine this legislation looking for cost savings, how to preserve and promote the arts, and to make absolutely, positively certain that none of the programs or our citizens will be harmed in any way. And we will continue to do exactly that. I sincerely appreciate the years of service Secretary Manchin has given to the State of West Virginia.”