CHARLESTON - State Attorney General Patrick Morrisey has written a letter to President Barack Obama regarding the search for a new person to run the Environmental Protection Agency.
In December, Lisa Jackson said she will be resigning from her position as EPA Administrator.
Morrisey said he sent the letter to Obama because "in West Virginia, the 'war on coal' and energy issues are very important."
"He (Obama) needs to take West Virginia into account when he's filling this position," Morrisey said.
Under Jackson, the EPA introduced sweeping changes to air pollution laws. Jackson also was criticized her views on climate change, emission from coal-fired power plants and rules regarding mine waste in streams.
Many Republicans blamed Jackson and others for waging a "war on coal," but environmentalists hailed her as a hero.
In his letter, the Republican Morrisey said he has "grave concerns about the current direction of the EPA and hope that you (Obama) will take the following considerations into account as the EPA transitions to a new Administrator."
Morrisey noted the state's role as a key energy-producing state, and he echoed concerns that U.S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., and others have expressed about the EPA's overreach and how it has affected West Virginians.
Morrisey said former AG Darrell McGraw "passed on opportunities" to join lawsuits against the EPA. But he said he strongly would consider doing so.
"In the weeks and months ahead, my office will be following carefully the EPA's actions concerning a wide variety of other matters that impact West Virginia," Morrisey wrote. "The State of West Virginia cares deeply about these issues, as those decisions will have a tremendous effect on our state's job base and economic livelihood."