Voter Opposition to Government-Backed Rockwool Factory Triggers Election Earthquake

Key Jefferson County, WV state and local races won by candidates who signed Jefferson County Vision pledge to oppose Rockwool.

CHARLES TOWN, WV.  In the first election since the general public became aware of the impact of the government-sponsored Rockwool project, Jefferson County voters yesterday sent a clear message to the political establishment: do not subsidize heavy industry near our schools.   

Five out of six state and local elections were won by candidates with declared opposition to Rockwool.  

“It is clear that Jefferson County strongly opposes government subsidies to build heavy industry near our schools,” said Jefferson County Vision Board member Leigh Smith.  “Since this summer, our community has spoken with a clear consistent voice: Stop Rockwool.  This Election Day 2018, voters took the next step in holding our government accountable.”

“The disastrous planning strategy pursued by the Jefferson County Development Authority (JDCA) has now been totally rebuked by our community. Rockwool is bad for our economy, our environment, and our future.  We join our local Board of Education in calling on the JCDA to immediately stop work on the disastrous Rockwool project.”

Leigh Smith continued: “We are elated to see how our community has come together to organize against this facility. Congratulations to all of the candidates, their supporters, and the voters who turned out to make their voices heard.”  

Background: In August of 2018, Jefferson County Vision distributed a pledge asking candidates to oppose Rockwool. Responses from candidates, or lack thereof, as well as candidate-provided statements, were used to create a voter education guide for state and local races.  Jefferson County Vision volunteers distributed the guide door-to-door, at events, and online.  As a result, five out of six state and local elections today were won by candidates with declared opposition to Rockwool.