Tomblin said he also plans to introduce legislation that addresses prison overcrowding. The bill is expected to include recommendations recently outlined in a comprehensive report about West Virginia's prison system.
Tomblin told reporters that West Virginia must find more ways to lower the rate of inmates who get released, but later commit crimes and wind up back in jail.
"We need to talk about how we stop recidivism to make sure that when people are released from the prison system that they have the skills, the ability and the training to go back into society and become productive citizens," Tomblin said.
Tomblin said such measures are more effective in curbing crime than building more prisons.
"Going that route is much better than spending $200 million on a new prison," he said.
Tomblin also said he and the state Commerce Department officials are still trying to persuade companies to build an ethane cracker plant in West Virginia. Such a facility, which would process ethane from the Marcellus Shale, could create hundreds of jobs. State and Kanawha County leaders have pitched a site at Institute for the cracker plant.
"I still have a great deal of confidence we will have something here in the near future," Tomblin said. "I know the talks are ongoing."
Reach Eric Eyre at erice...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-4869.