H. B. 4352
(By Delegates Guthrie, Walker,
L. Phillips, Poore, Sponaugle, Craig, Fragale,
Skaff and Caputo)
[Introduced January 28, 2014; referred to the
Committee on Small Business, Entrepreneurship & Economic Development.]
A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new article, designated §5B-2I-1, §5B-2I-2, §5B-2I-3, §5B-2I-4, §5B-2I-5 and §5B-2I-6, all relating to requiring entities that receive public moneys for the purpose of economic development to file an annual report to the West Virginia Economic Development Office providing data to insure that public moneys are being utilized to provide jobs and other economic benefit; filing fee required; report data considered public records; and recapture of moneys upon noncompliance.
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 §5B-2I-1, §5B-2I-2, §5B-2I-3, §5B-2I-4, §5B-2I-5 and §5B-2I-6, all to read as follows:
ARTICLE 2I. Accountability of Businesses Receiving Economic Development Incentives.
§5B-2I-1. Economic incentives - businesses to report.
(a) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, any business, as defined in subsection (b) of this section that receives an expenditure of public moneys from the state, including tax credits, in the amount of $25,000 or more for the purpose of stimulating economic development in the state shall file an annual progress report with the West Virginia Development Office within ninety days of receiving the incentive. The annual progress report shall be submitted in addition to any information that the business is required to submit pursuant to the terms of the economic incentive received.
(b) For purposes of this article, "business" means any corporation, limited liability company, partnership, sole proprietorship, trust or foundation, or other individual or organization carrying on a business, whether or not operated for profit.
§5B-2I-2. Contents of report.
The annual progress report required pursuant to section one of this article shall include, but may not be limited to, the following:
(1) (A) If the recipient is a corporation, the corporate name of the recipient and the name of the chief officer; or
(B) If the recipient is one or more individuals doing business as a partnership or other pass-through entity under a distinct business name, the business name used by the partnership or other pass-through entity;
(2) The business address and business phone number of the recipient;
(3) If the recipient received the economic incentive for the purpose of creating jobs:
(A) A statement of the number of jobs created by the recipient;
(B) Payroll or other data to verify the number of jobs created by the recipient since receipt of the economic incentive;
(C) The position title, monthly wage, and benefits for each job created;
(D) The employer-sponsored health benefits for each detailed occupational level; and
(E) A statement as to whether the recipient reduced employment at any other site in the state that is controlled by the recipient as a result of automation, merger, acquisition, corporate restructuring, or other business activity;
(4) If the recipient received the economic incentive for a purpose other than job creation, a statement that specifies the goals of the economic incentive and a detailed statement that specifies how the recipient is achieving those goals;
(5) Any other information reasonably required by the West Virginia Development Office to evaluate the progress and effectiveness of the particular economic incentive received; and
(6) A certification as to the accuracy of the progress report signed by the chief officer of the recipient that is a corporation or signed by an individual, or an authorized agent thereof, benefitting from the economic incentive due to an ownership interest in a partnership or other pass-through entity.
§5B-2I-3. Filing fee.
The recipient shall submit with the report required pursuant to section one of this article a filing fee in an amount equal to one percent of the economic incentive received to the West Virginia Economic Development Office. Such moneys shall be used to cover the costs of carrying out the purposes of this article.
§5B-2I-4. West Virginia Economic Development Office to present reports to the Legislature.
The Economic Development Office shall condense and summarize the annual progress reports submitted to the development office pursuant to section one of this article and shall present an aggregate report of the data contained in the progress reports to the Legislature no later than the first day of the regular session each year.
§5B-2I-5. Reports are public records.
(a) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, information submitted in the annual progress reports to the West Virginia Economic Development Office pursuant to section one of this article are considered public records under article one, chapter twenty-nine-b of this code and shall be preserved for at least five years by the commission. The development office shall be the custodian of the reports and shall make the reports available for inspection by any person at reasonable times. Nothing in this section may be construed to permit the disclosure to the public of any West Virginia income tax return or of any information that reveals the amount of compensation paid to any individual employee of the recipient.
(b) The West Virginia Economic Development Office shall publish the aggregate report specified in section four of this article on its official website.
§5B-2I-6. Recapture of moneys.
(a) If the reporting requirements specified in section two of this article are not fulfilled or if the West Virginia Economic Development Office, upon review of the report, determines that the person or entity that received the economic incentive has not complied with the requirements of the economic incentive, the development office may recapture the moneys expended on the economic incentive.
(2) The West Virginia Economic Development Office shall provide notice and explanation to the recipient of the economic incentive of the development office's intent to recapture the grant or loan and state the amount to be recaptured. The recipient shall remit the amount to the development office within thirty calendar days of the date of the notice.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to require any entity that receives public moneys for the purpose of economic development to file an annual report to the West Virginia Economic Development Office providing data to insure that public moneys are being utilized to provide jobs and other economic benefit. The bill also provides for a filing fee and recapture of moneys for noncompliance with reporting requirements or failure to comply with the requirements of the economic incentives. The bill also specifies the contents of the report and requires the development authority to present a report of the aggregate data to the Legislature each year.
This article is new; therefore, it has been completely underscored.