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W.Va. House 14 candidate: Johnny Roach (D)

Sep. 21, 2014 @ 10:42 AM

PARTY: Democrat

HOME CITY: Point Pleasant


E-MAIL ADDRESS: jroach4066@suddenlink.net

PERSONAL STATEMENT: I want to work hard to bring industry and good paying jobs back to West Virginia. We have the land, river, rail, and a outstanding workforce. We have to be business friendly and convince the company's how great it is in West Virginia. I'm a small business owner and realize many of the struggles they face everyday. I want to help them not only keep there doors open but grow. Children are West Virginia's most valuable asset. I want to be sure they receive the best possible education. I also want to work to better educate the youth about the dangers of drugs.


AGE: 44

EDUCATION: PPHS 1988; Marshall University BA.

CURRENT OFFICE OR OCCUPATION: Co Owner of Village Pizza in Point Pleasant from 2004-Present.

OTHER WORK HISTORY: M&G Polymers member of United Steel Workers and Mayor City of Point Pleasant.

CIVIC ORGANIZATIONS: Point Pleasant Stadium Committee.

FAMILY: I have been married to Traci L. (Smith) Roach for 20 years. We have two children, Andrew age 15 and Evan age 9. I enjoy spending time with my family and attending their various sporting events.


1. Are you satisfied that the Legislature has done enough to protect West Virginians from chemical spills?

I think the legislature took a step in the right direction with the requirements of above ground tanks being inspected. Its still a situation that will need to be looked at in the future, so that we can assure the safety of all West Virginians.

2. What steps would you recommend to improve West Virginia's economy?

We need to take advantage of West Virginia's great natural resources that it has. We need to be as business friendly as possible and try to get industry to locate in West Virginia. Our state is losing too many jobs, we need to meet with growing businesses and convince them that West Virginia is the right place for them.

3. Do you think more needs to be done to ensure high school graduates are competent?

Of course, We should always want the very best for any of our children. We need to try and pay our teachers what surrounding states do so we can have the best qualified teachers and encourage them to stay in West Virginia.

4. How do you propose keeping students in school and reducing the truancy rate?

I think we need to have a wide range of programs so we can offer something to capture the children's interest. A kid that is interested will attend school. A qualified teacher will help encourage the children and explain to them the importance of receiving a good education.

5. What can the state government do to improve educational achievement in West Virginia?

Make sure the right programs are in place for the teachers and then make sure you have the most qualified teachers in place for the children. Education needs to always be at the top of the list. Listen to there needs and try to provide it if possible.

6. What can the state government do to improve workforce development in West Virginia?

Work with business and education systems to assure that our students are learning the right things to make them potential employees after graduation. This can apply to not only those kids wishing to go on to college but also to those children in our vocational schools.

7. What more should the state do to battle the prescription drug crisis?

Continue to develop ways that make restrictions on getting more than what is needed for a particular patient. Use programs that will let a doctor know what prescriptions are being prescribed by other doctors for the same patient. This is currently being done in other states. We also need to find ways to treat the people that have been addicted.

8. Are there more steps the state should take to reduce obesity?

I feel that the best way is to increase the education on the dangers of obesity. Try to encourage family's to get outside and be active.

9. How could the state help small businesses grow in West Virginia?

As a small business owner I understand that small business needs help in West Virginia. We need to look at the fact that small businesses create the most jobs in America and try to help them find ways to succeed and grow the same as we try to help the large corporations that want to locate in West Virginia.

10. Do you think the state should do more to reduce the size of the prison population?

Do you think the state should do more to reduce the size of the prison population?  If we could better educate the public on the dangers of drug abuse.  Less drug users will lower the crime rates in the state this will lower the prison population.   A better economy would help also.

11. What measures do you support that would improve the lives of West Virginians, especially children, who are living in poverty?

We need to support any child no matter what there income may be. Every child deserves to have a chance to succeed in life. The CHIPS program helps provide health care to many children. I also like the meal programs that are being provided at schools for their meals.

12. What measures do you support on fracking/horizontal drilling that would protect people living near drilling sites?

The current standards are above what most states currently require. I feel we should be business friendly while maintaining a safe distance from the drilling sites to the nearby homes.

13. Do you support the West Virginia Department of Education’s Next Generation Content Standards and Objectives, West Virginia’s plan to implement Common Core?

I would like to talk to the teachers that are in our classrooms and see what there thoughts are. I support anything that will ensure our children are receiving the best education possible.

14. What needs to be done now to diversify the economy of West Virginia?

We need to look at neighboring states and see what they are doing better with business climate so we can be on a equal playing field. Natural gas is booming right now and we need to take advantage of the opportunities that it brings. We also need to work hard to keep our coal jobs that have always been here in West Virginia.

15. What solutions would you offer to deal with drug abuse problems in West Virginia?

We need to better educate the young people about the dangers of drugs. We also need to look into starting rural county drug task teams to help fight the growing problem. We also need a better drug recovery plan put in place.

16. How would you address the problems of barriers to employment and other services experienced by those in successful long-term recovery from addictions?

I think we have to show people who work hard to overcome addictions that employment is possible. I also believe many people are willing to give people a second chance.

17. Do you support West Virginia asking the USDA to allow the state to say SNAP benefits cannot be used to purchase non-nutritive soft drinks? Please explain why or why not.

No, I think its not the states responsibility to decide that.

18. West Virginia has the highest rate of smoking among pregnant women. We also have one of the lowest tobacco taxes in the country. Do you support increasing the West Virginia state tax on tobacco products to coincide with the national average?

I feel that you can’t just raise a tax and expect all pregnant women to stop smoking. We need to try to use better education resources that explains the dangers of smoking while pregnant.


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