CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- House Speaker Tim Armstead, R-Kanawha, today issued the following statement in response to Gov. Jim Justice's announcement that the Go365 wellness program being implemented by the Public Employees Insurance Agency will now be a voluntary, not mandatory, program.
"I am grateful that the Governor has announced this change, and thank PEIA Director Ted Cheatham for meeting with lawmakers and hearing our concerns about the plan," Speaker Armstead said. "We have heard a tremendous outcry from our constituents about looming changes to the PEIA plan, particularly the Go365 plan, and I am glad this change is being made.
"The proposed changes to the PEIA plan were put forward by the Finance Board before the Legislature began its session," Speaker Armstead said. "I want our teachers and state employees to know: we hear your concerns and are exploring what options and alternatives are available.
"As we do so, it is important to remember that, while our state budget picture has improved, we're still not out of the woods yet," Speaker Armstead said. "We certainly recognize that our public employees want better pay along with no increases in health care costs. While our resources remain limited, we will continue to explore options to ensure our taxpayers' dollars are allocated in a way that gives our teachers and state employees the greatest pay and benefits our resources will allow."