Senate Bill No. 311
(By Senators Chafin, M. Hall, Jenkins, Miller, Laird and D. Hall)
[Introduced January 9, 2014; referred to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure; and then to the Committee on Finance.]
A BILL to amend and reenact §17-16A-13 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to requiring the West Virginia Parkways, Economic Development and Tourism Authority to transfer a certain portion of the revenues generated from its operation of the highway formerly known as the West Virginia Turnpike to the county commissions where that highway is located.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §17-16A-13 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 16A. WEST VIRGINIA PARKWAYS, ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND TOURISM AUTHORITY.
§17-16A-13. Tolls, rents, fees, charges and revenues; competitive bidding on contracts.
(a)(1) The parkways authority is hereby authorized to fix, revise, charge and collect tolls for the use of each parkway project and the different parts or sections thereof and to fix, revise, charge and collect rents, fees, charges and other revenues, of whatever kind or character, for the use of each economic development project or tourism project, or any part or section thereof, and to contract with any person, partnership, association or corporation desiring the use of any part thereof, including the right-of-way adjoining the paved portion, for placing thereon telephone, telegraph, electric light, power or other utility lines, gas stations, garages, stores, hotels, restaurants and advertising signs, or for any other purpose except for tracks for railroad or railway use, and to fix the terms, conditions, rents and rates of charges for such that use. Such The tolls, rents, fees and charges shall be so fixed and adjusted in respect of the aggregate of tolls, or in respect of the aggregate rents, fees and charges, from the project or projects in connection with which the bonds of any issue shall have been issued as to provide a fund sufficient with other revenues, if any, to pay: (A) The cost of maintaining, repairing and operating such the project or projects; and (B) the principal of and the interest on such the bonds as the same shall become it becomes due and payable and to create reserves for such those purposes. Such tolls, rents, fees and other charges shall not be are not subject to supervision or regulation by any other commission, board, bureau, department or agency of the state. The tolls, rents, fees, charges and all other revenues derived from the project or projects in connection with which the bonds of any issue shall have been issued, except such that part thereof as may be that is necessary to pay the cost of maintenance, repair and operation and to provide such reserves therefor as may be provided in the resolution authorizing the issuance of such the bonds or in the trust agreement securing the same bonds, shall be set aside at regular intervals as may be provided in the resolution or the trust agreement in a sinking fund which is hereby pledged to, and charged with, the payment of: (I) The interest upon the bonds as such the interest shall fall falls due; (ii) the principal of the bonds as the same shall fall due; (iii) the necessary charges of paying agents for paying principal and interest; and (iv) the redemption price or the purchase price of bonds retired by call or purchase as therein provided. The use and disposition of moneys to the credit of such the sinking fund shall be is subject to the provisions of the resolution authorizing the issuance of the bonds or of the trust agreement. Except as may otherwise be provided in the resolution or the trust agreement, such the sinking fund shall be is a fund for all bonds without distinction or priority of one over another. The moneys in the sinking fund, less such the reserve as may be provided in the resolution or trust agreement, if not used within a reasonable time for the purchase of bonds for cancellation as above provided, shall be applied to the redemption of bonds at the redemption price then applicable.
(2)(A) In fiscal year 1998, after the parkways authority has met or provided for the satisfaction of each requirement imposed by the provisions of subdivision (1) of this subsection, the parkways authority shall pay $250,000 to the Hatfield-McCoy regional recreation authority from any remaining balance of revenues received from economic development projects and tourism projects.
(B) (2) Upon the effective date of this act, the parkways authority shall seek authorization from the federal highway administration, the state Department of Transportation and the trustee under any trust indenture or agreement existing as the result of the issuance of any revenue bonds under the provisions of this article to issue additional revenue bonds in a total amount not to exceed $6,000,000 for the purpose of funding projects of the Hatfield-McCoy regional recreation authority. Upon the agreement of all of such entities that the parkways authority be authorized to do so, as certified to the parkways authority, the Governor and the Joint Committee on Government and Finance, the parkways authority is authorized to issue additional revenue bonds in a total amount not to exceed $6,000,000. The proceeds of the revenue bonds shall be used to fund projects of the Hatfield-McCoy regional recreation authority. Each issuance of such revenue bonds and the application of the proceeds thereof shall be subject to each condition, restriction or other provision of this article applicable to the issuance of parkway revenue bonds. In the event the agreement is not certified as required by this subsection, and until the same is certified, the parkways authority shall pay $250,000 to the Hatfield-McCoy regional recreation authority in the fiscal year ending June 30, 2000, and in each fiscal year thereafter, for a total of nine consecutive years, for the purpose of funding projects of the Hatfield-McCoy regional recreation authority. These amounts shall be paid in quarterly installments from remaining balances in each fiscal year of revenues received from economic development projects and tourism projects as determined in the manner provided in paragraph (A) of this subdivision.
(3) Beginning on July 1, 2014, and continuing each year after that, the parkways authority shall transfer one half of one per cent of the gross revenues it receives from operating the highway formerly known as the West Virginia Turnpike to the county commissions of those counties where the highway is located. Those counties are Kanawha, Fayette, Raleigh and Mercer.
(b) The parkways authority shall cause, as soon as it is legally able to do so, all contracts to which it is a party and which relate to the operation, maintenance or use of any restaurant, motel or other lodging facility, truck and automobile service facility, food vending facility or any other service facility located along the West Virginia turnpike, to be renewed on a competitive bid basis. All contracts relating to any facility or services entered into by the parkways authority with a private party with respect to any project constructed after the effective date of this legislation shall be let on a competitive bid basis only. If the parkways authority receives a proposal for the development of a project, such the proposal shall be made available to the public in a convenient location in the county wherein where the proposed facility may be located. The parkways authority shall publish a notice of the proposal by a Class I legal advertisement in accordance with the provisions of article three, chapter fifty-nine of this code. The publication area shall be is the county in which the proposed facility would be located. Any citizen may communicate by writing to the parkways authority his or her opposition to or approval to such the proposal within a period of time not less than forty-five days from the publication of the notice. No contract for the development of a project may be entered into by the parkways authority until a public hearing is held in the vicinity of the location of the proposed project with at least twenty days' notice of such the hearing by a Class I publication pursuant to section two of said that article. The parkways authority shall make written findings of fact prior to rendering a decision on any proposed project. All studies, records, documents and other materials which are considered by the parkways authority in making such the findings shall be made available for public inspection at the time of the publication of the notice of public hearing and at a convenient location in the county where the proposed project may be located. The parkways authority shall promulgate rules in accordance with chapter twenty-nine-a of this code for the conduct of any hearing required by this section. Persons attending any such a hearing shall be afforded a reasonable opportunity to speak and be heard on the proposed project.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to require the West Virginia Parkways, Economic Development and Tourism Authority to transfer one half of one per cent of the gross revenues it receives from operating the highway formerly known as the West Virginia Turnpike to the county commissions where the highway is located. The bill identifies those counties as Kanawha, Fayette, Raleigh and Mercer. The bill also removes obsolete language.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.