A new federal report shows West Virginia’s economic output rose 3 percent in the first quarter of this year led by mining.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis says the state’s increase in gross domestic product trailed only Texas’ 3.9 percent.
Nationally the report says mining grew 21.6 percent and was the “leading contributor” to growth in Texas, West Virginia and New Mexico, which was third at 2.8 percent.
Gov. Jim Justice, whose family owns coal mines, predicted last fall that the coal market, which was depressed, would rebound.
Related taxes on production of coal and natural gas, which also has rebounded from last year’s price trough, have increased, helping West Virginia close its state budget deficit.
Justice says a boost in energy sector jobs hasn’t materialized yet.
-The Associated Press