H. B. 4589
(By Delegates Miley, Fragale and Caputo)
[Introduced February 17, 2012; referred to the
Committee on Veterans’ Affairs then Finance.]
A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new article, designated §9A-5-1, §9A-5-2, §9A-5-3, §9A-5-4, §9A-5-5, §9A-5-6 and §9A-5-7, all relating to establishment of the West Virginia Board of Veteran Education and Support; and authorizing powers and membership.
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 §9A-5-1, §9A-5-2, §9A-5-3, §9A-5-4, §9A-5-5, §9A-5-6, §9A-5-7, all to read as follows:
ARTICLE 5. West Virginia Board of Veteran Education and Support.
(a) The Legislature finds that West Virginia veterans represent a valuable component of the state's higher education population. The pursuit of benefits and entitlements at both the state and federal levels are foreboding to many veterans seeking continuing education, while maintaining employment and other obligations. It is, therefore, in the best interest of the state to consolidate and network veterans resources and personnel in order to ensure services to the state's veteran seeking continuing education.
(b) The purpose of this article is to establish the West Virginia Board of Veteran Education and Support for the purposes of administering and networking the combined assets of Veteran's Affairs personnel through out the state's institutions of higher education and to foster connectivity and communication throughout Veteran Affairs staff at institutions of higher learning throughout the state.
"Eligible veteran" for this article means a person who meets the criteria established in article two, section four of this chapter and is enrolled and in any of the state's higher education institutions.
§9A-5-3. Board of Veterans Education and Support.
The Legislature hereby authorizes the West Virginia Board of Veteran Education and Support for the purpose of strategic planning and programming, networking, and promoting open communication throughout the various Offices of Veterans Affairs established on the state's various institutions of higher education, dedicated to the educational benefit of all state veterans.
§9A-5-4. Appointment of board; terms.
(a) The board shall be comprised of a single representative of the various Offices of Veteran Affairs from each of the state's institutions of higher education that receive tuition assistance or any other funding from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs.
(b) A staff member of any bona fide Reserve Officer Training Corps is authorized board membership for his or her respective higher learning institution; provided that the selection of representation is agreed upon by both the ROTC unit staff and the Office of Veteran Affairs of the respective schools.
(c) The initial appointment terms for the appointed members of the board shall last one year. Board members may be reappointed without a limit to consecutive terms. Board members serving as chair person are ineligible for serving consecutive terms as chair.
§9A-5-5. Compensation of board members.
Each member of the board shall serve without compensation, but each member shall be entitled to reimbursement by the state for all reasonable and necessary expenses actually incurred in the performance of his or her duties as a board member.
§9A-5-6. Board; quorum; bylaws.
(a) The board shall exercise all the powers given to the authority. The board shall meet semiannually, after the completion of the spring and fall enrollment dates pursuant to a consensus of a majority of the aforementioned educational institutions.
(b) A majority of the members of the board constitutes a quorum and a quorum must be present for the board to conduct business. Unless expressly forbidden by state or federal regulations, action may be taken by majority vote of the members present.
(c) The board shall adopt bylaws and rules, as may be necessary for its operation and management, governing the manner in which the business of the board is conducted and shall schedule semiannual meeting dates and times in accordance with aforementioned semester schedules.
§9A-5-7. Board Powers.
The board shall have the following powers:
(a) To make and adopt all necessary rules for its organization and operations not inconsistent with law;
(b) To elect its own chairperson from members currently serving;
(1) Upon election and confirmation, the chair person shall be responsible for supervising drafting and submission of the board's semiannual reports to the West Virginia Legislature and the West Virginia Department of Veterans Assistance.
(2) The chair person will serve as host and facilitator of the semiannual board meetings.
(c) To develop and implement programming for the benefit all veterans of the various campuses throughout the state;
(d) To pursue state and federal grants and other sources of funding for staff and facilities pursuant to the purpose of veteran education.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to establish the West Virginia Board of Veteran Education and Support.
This article is new, therefore it has been completely underscored.