According to a former chief economist with the U.S. Department of Labor, a "flag man" on a public project in rural West Virginia is paid $37 per hour plus fringe benefits.
This unreasonable wage rate is not only shocking, but certainly has an impact on the number of schools that can be built and the miles of highways that can be maintained and constructed in the state.
A WVU study suggests West Virginia's wage rates cost state taxpayers 30 percent more in road building expenditures.
Lastly, West Virginia must have a reasonable regulatory climate for businesses to operate and create more jobs.
Our two Democratic U.S. Senators must undertake the task of finding a way to assist President Obama's EPA to promulgate regulations that assist people who need lower utility bills and jobs, instead of higher costs and fewer jobs.
Governor Tomblin is on record saying he'll reserve judgment on the recommendations of his Blue Ribbon Commission until he receives their final report.
The Governor has done an excellent job of confronting the state's indebtedness, and should continue to search for additional ways to address the critical highway funding issue without numerous new fees and taxes.
Growing the economy by discarding the status quo and taking bold steps to make West Virginia more competitive will create new revenue and new jobs.
What will follow is a competitive business climate that will provide what is needed to develop a new education system, improved highway system, and a better quality of life for all West Virginians.
Roberts is president of the W.Va. Chamber of Commerce.