CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - West Virginia Governor Jim Justice made a stop in the Eastern Panhandle Thursday afternoon for his statewide “Save Our State Tour” where he discussed his plans to grow the state's economy.
Justice’s visit to the Eastern Panhandle was his first since this November’s election.
Nearly 100 people showed up both to voice concerns and show support.
West Virginia is facing an estimated deficit of at least $500 million, according to the governor.
His $2.8 billion roads plan will create 48,000 "immediate" new construction jobs, including more than 1,000 jobs in Jefferson County on two US-340 projects.
“[I always say] Think of West Virginia first. Think U.S.A. first and Jim Justice has said over and over again, I don't care if you're a Democrat, Republican or Independent,” said West Virginia Governor, Jim Justice.
The projects would construct a 4-lane divided highway in order to improve traffic operations and increase capacity on the roadways, which some community members say is a good thing.
"Definitely high paying contractor jobs draw more people in here, I'd be good for the economy,” said District Engineer for District 5, Lee Thorne.
"I don't see why in the world anyone would stand in the way of 48,000 jobs and bonding it and everything but that takes 90 days and then the hammer drops and we're off and running with jobs,” said Justice.
There were also people in the crowd who were skeptical of what governor justice seems to be promising, holding signs saying "pay your taxes" and "Democrats made W.V. bankrupt".”
"Ya know, Democrats put us in this position for 8 years and I think he responded to those well and from the other side on taxes and how he's going to help get us out of the hole,” said President, Citizens Fire Company, Ronald Fletcher.
Of the other topics discussed at the meeting were Jefferson County tourism, education and the opioid problem throughout the state.