CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Hulett Carlson Smith, West Virginia's governor from 1965 to 1969, whose term was marked by several disasters and the state's first attempt to regulate the strip mining industry, died on Sunday in Scottsdale, Ariz., at the age of 93.
Smith, a native and longtime resident of Beckley -- his father was mayor there for 25 years -- moved to an assisted-living facility in Arizona last year.
Several familiar features of state politics and government took shape during Smith's tenure. He championed the Modern Budget Amendment, which made the governor solely responsible for preparing the annual state budget submitted to lawmakers.
Under his watch, the state also passed laws to strengthen human rights employment standards, improve air and water pollution controls, increase workers' compensation benefits and legalize the sale of liquor by the drink in "private clubs."
I remember governor Smith and I think he was a pretty good governor. Things were crazy across America during those years 1965 to 1969. Lots of anger, war, protests, dropping out, wall to wall backlash, in a country still in shock over the senseless death of a great democratic president. I thought governor Smith got a lot of good things done and pulled the state through some turbulent times in good order.
RIP Governor Hulett Carlson Smith
If you think times are bad now, think back to the days when America was a Bush dictatorship and Abu Ghraib was "reality"