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Combating Mountaintop RemovalNew Directions in the Fight against Big Coal$
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Bryan T. McNeil

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780252036439

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252036439.001.0001

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Whose Development Is It?

Whose Development Is It?

Chapter:
(p.113) 6. Whose Development Is It?
Source:
Combating Mountaintop Removal
Author(s):

Bryan T. McNeil

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5406/illinois/9780252036439.003.0007

This chapter analyzes how West Virginia's economic development policies and practices, built on neoliberal influences, systematically favor the coal industry and fail to create a diverse economy or reduce poverty. The most striking characteristic of West Virginia's economic development is that there seems to be no focus on the quality of jobs created. As a policy, the state's economic development efforts do not form a coherent and effective plan to create jobs and long-term economic growth in West Virginia. Projects like the Hatfield-McCoy ATV trails, racetracks, and baseball stadiums create geographically isolated, relatively low-paying service jobs that typically offer no benefits. Implicitly, the state's various development policies protect Coal's status as the dominant economic engine in southern West Virginia.

Keywords:   West Virginia, economic development, neoliberalism, coal industry, diverse economy, poverty, economic growth

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