“West Virginia is blessed to have a strong, diverse energy sector,” he said in the 18-minute address.
“Last year, our state led the nation in coal exports. And I will continue to protect and increase the production of coal in West Virginia.”
After serving an abridged special mandate as acting governor since 2010, the 60-year old Democrat was sworn into his first four-year term on the south steps of the state capitol in Charleston.
Tomblin spoke mostly in general terms about the betterment of West Virginians’ standard of living and education.
Support for the state’s mining sector was hinted at through promises for job creation and resistance to federal pressures on the coal industry.
“Unfortunately, for me [improving the job climate] means, in many instances, fighting the federal government to get off our backs and out of our way,” he said.
“But it is a fight I will not concede and I will never back down.”