House Bill 2952 History
H. B. 2952
(By Delegates Marshall, Manchin, Miley, Moore,
Fleischauer and Barill)
[Introduced March 15, 2013; referred to the
Committee on the Judiciary then Finance.]
A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by
adding thereto a new article, designated §21A-12-1, §21A-12-2,
§21A-12-3, §21A-12-4, §21A-12-5, §21A-12-6 and §21A-12-7, all
relating to the creation of Work Share West Virginia;
providing rule-making authority; specifying work share plan
contents; providing criteria for approval or denial of work
share plan; providing provisions for enforcement of program,
including criminal sanctions, employee eligibility, benefit
amounts and exhaustion of benefits; requiring reimbursement of
benefits paid; providing for charging participating employers;
and requiring report to Legislature.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended
by adding thereto a new article, designated §21A-12-1, §21A-12-2,
§21A-12-3, §21A-12-4, §21A-12-5, §21A-12-6 and §21A-12-7, all to
read as follows:
ARTICLE 12. WORK SHARE WEST VIRGINIA.
_____As used in this article:
_____(1) "Executive director" means the Executive Director of
Workforce West Virginia.
_____(2) "Participating employee" means an employee who works a
reduced number of hours under an approved shared work plan.
_____(3) "Participating employer" means an employer who has a
shared work plan.
_____(4) "Shared work benefit" means an unemployment compensation
benefit that is payable to a participating employee.
§21A-12-2. Creation of the Work Share West Virginia Program.
_____(a) The "Work Share West Virginia" program is created. Under
this program an employer who participates in the program reduces
the number of hours worked by the employees of the employer in lieu
of layoffs. Work Share West Virginia is a completely voluntary
program and an employer is under no obligation to participate.
_____(b) An employer who wishes to participate in the program shall
submit a plan to the executive director that satisfies the
requirements contained in section three of this article.
_____(c) The executive director shall propose rules, in accordance
with the provisions of article three, chapter twenty-nine-a of this
code, that are necessary to implement and enforce the provisions of
this article, including rules necessary to implement guidance issued by the United States Secretary of Labor with respect to the
Work Share West Virginia program.
§21A-12-3. Work Share plan contents.
_____(a) The executive director shall approve a shared work plan
submitted under section two of this article if all of the following
_____(1) The employer identifies in the plan the participating
employees by name and social security number;
_____(2) The employer describes in the plan the manner in which the
employer will implement the requirements of the Work Share West
_____(3) The employer includes in the plan a plan for giving
advance notice, if feasible, to an employee whose workweek is to be
_____(4) The employer includes with the plan an estimate of the
number of layoffs that would have occurred absent the ability to
participate in the Work Share West Virginia program;
_____(5) The employer certifies in the plan that if the
participating employer provides health benefits and retirement
benefits under a defined benefit plan, as defined in 26 U.S.C.
414(j), as amended, or contributions under a defined contribution
plan as defined in 26 U.S.C. 414(i), as amended, to any employee
whose workweek is reduced under the program that the benefits will
continue to be provided to an employee participating in the Work Share West Virginia program under the same terms and conditions as
though the workweek of the employee had not been reduced or to the
same extent as other employees not participating in the program;
_____(6) The employer, in the plan, permits eligible employees to
participate, as appropriate, in training to enhance job skills
approved by the executive director, including employer-sponsored
training or worker training funded under the federal "Workforce
Investment Act of 1998," 112 Stat. 936, 29 U.S.C. 2801 et seq., as
_____(7) If any of the participating employees are covered by a
collective bargaining agreement, the plan must be approved, in
writing, by the participating employees' collective bargaining
_____(8) The employer includes in the plan any other information as
required by the United States Secretary of Labor or the executive
director under the rules the executive director adopts under
section two of this article; and
_____(9) The terms of the written plan submitted by the employer
and implementation of that plan are consistent with obligations of
the employer under the applicable federal and state laws.
_____(b) An employer may not include in the employer's shared work
plan any employee employed by the employer on a seasonal, temporary
or intermittent basis.
_____(c) (1) The executive director may not approve a shared work plan submitted by an employer who is assigned the maximum
contribution rate calculated in accordance with section five,
article five of this chapter.
_____(2) The executive director shall approve or deny a shared work
plan and shall send a written notice to the employer stating
whether the executive director approved or denied the plan not
later than thirty days after the executive director receives the
plan. If the executive director denies approval of a shared work
plan, the executive director shall state the reasons for denying
approval in the written notice sent to the employer.
_____(d) The executive director shall enforce the requirements of
the Work Share West Virginia program in the same manner as the
executive director enforces the requirements of this chapter,
including the applicable provisions of article ten of this chapter.
§21A-12-4. Approval of work share plan.
_____A shared work plan approved under section three of this
article takes effect on the date the executive director approves
the plan. An approved shared work plan expires on the last day of
the twelfth calendar month beginning after the effective date of
§21A-12-5. Employee eligibility.
_____(a) An individual is eligible to receive shared work benefits
for a week in which the individual satisfies all of the following:
_____(1) The individual is employed by a participating employer and is subject to a shared work plan that was approved before that week
and is in effect for that week.
_____(2) The individual is available for work and is actively
seeking suitable work by being available for the individual's
workweek as required by the rules adopted by the executive director
under section two of this article.
_____(3) The individual's workweek has been reduced by at least ten
percent but not more than fifty percent.
_____(4) The individual otherwise satisfies the requirements of
_____(b) The executive director shall pay a participating employee
who is eligible for a weekly shared work benefit in an amount equal
to the participating employee's regular weekly benefit amount for
a period of total unemployment as described in section ten, article
six of this chapter, multiplied by the nearest full percentage of
reduction of the participating employee's wages under the
participating employee's participating employer's shared work plan.
The executive director shall round the amount of a shared work
benefit that is not a multiple of one dollar to the next lower
multiple of one dollar.
_____(c) A participating employee is not entitled to receive shared
work benefits and regular unemployment compensation benefits that
exceed the maximum total benefits payable to the participating
employee in a benefit year under section ten, article six of this chapter. No participating employee may be paid shared work benefits
during the employee's benefit year in an amount that exceeds
twenty-six times the amount of regular compensation under section
ten, article six of this chapter payable to the employee for a week
of total unemployment. An individual who receives shared work
benefits is not entitled to receive benefits for partial
unemployment under section ten, article six of this chapter for any
week during which the individual works as a participating employee.
The executive director may not pay an individual shared work
benefits for a week during which the individual performs paid work
for the individual's participating employer that exceeds the
reduced hours established under a shared work plan.
_____(d) An individual who has received all of the shared work
benefits and regular unemployment compensation benefits available
in a benefit year is an individual who has exhausted regular
benefits under section ten, article six of this chapter and is
entitled to receive extended benefits under section eleven, article
six of this chapter if the individual is otherwise eligible to
receive benefits under that section.
§21A-12-6. Reimbursement of benefits paid; charging participating
employer; exhaustion of shared work benefits.
__(a) As used in this section, "regular benefits" has the same
meaning as in section one, article six-a of this chapter.
__(b) If the state is eligible for and receives reimbursement for shared work benefits paid under the Work Share West Virginia
program from the federal government pursuant to the federal "Layoff
Prevention Act of 2012," Pub. L. No. 112-96, 126 Stat. 156,
notwithstanding section seven, article five of this chapter, and if
permitted under that act, during the time period in which the state
is reimbursed the account of a participating employer may not be
charged for any shared work benefits paid to the participating
employer's participating employees. Beginning on the date the
federal government no longer provides reimbursement, or if the
state does not receive reimbursement or the federal government
requires an employer's account to be charged, a participating
employer's account shall be charged for shared work benefits in
accordance with subsections (c) and (d) of this section.
__(c) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section and
notwithstanding the provisions of section seven, article five of
this chapter, any shared work benefits paid to an individual under
section five of this article shall be charged only to the account
of the participating employer under whose shared work plan the
individual is a participating employee.
__(d) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, if
an individual exhausts the shared work benefits the individual
receives under section five of this article and during the same
benefit year the individual receives shared work benefits the
individual becomes eligible for regular benefits by a separation of employment from the participating employer under whose shared work
plan the individual was a participating employee, notwithstanding
section seven, article five of this chapter, only the participating
employer's account shall be charged for any regular benefits the
individual receives for the remainder of the individual's benefit
year resulting directly from that separation from employment.
§21A-12-7. Report to the Legislature.
__(a) Beginning one year after the effective date of this
article, and every year thereafter, the executive director shall
prepare and submit a report evaluating the use and effectiveness of
the Work Share West Virginia Program created by section two of this
article, and the impact of the program on the Unemployment
Compensation Fund created in article eight of this chapter. The
executive director shall include in that report the number of
employers and employees participating in the program, the amount of
shared work benefits paid under the program during the immediately
preceding year and any other information the executive director
considers to be relevant.
__(b) The executive director shall submit the report to the
Governor, the President and Minority Leader of the Senate, and the
Speaker and the Minority Leader of the House of Delegates.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to create the Work Share
West Virginia program in which a participating employer reduces the
number of hours worked by its employees in lieu of laying off employees.
This article is new; therefore, it has been completely