Senate Bill No. 595
(By Senators Wooton, Bowman, Buckalew, Schoonover, Wagner, White
[Passed March 9, 1996; in effect ninety days from passage.]
AN ACT to amend and reenact section five, article one, chapter four
of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred
thirty-one, as amended, relating to authority to subpoena
witnesses; applicability of whistle-blower law; and penalty.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That section five, article one, chapter four of the code of
West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, be
amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 1. OFFICERS, MEMBERS AND EMPLOYEES; APPROPRIATIONS;
INVESTIGATIONS; DISPLAY OF FLAGS; RECORDS; USE OF CAPITOL
BUILDING; PREFILING OF BILLS AND RESOLUTIONS; STANDING
COMMITTEES; INTERIM MEETINGS; NEXT MEETING OF THE SENATE.
§4-1-5. Authority to subpoena witnesses and documents; penalty for
refusal to comply; applicability of whistle-blower law.
(a) When the Senate or House of Delegates, or a committee of either house, authorized to examine witnesses, by resolution or by
rules of the Senate or of the House of Delegates, shall order the
attendance of any witness, or the production of any books, papers,
documents or records necessary for the Senate, House of Delegates
or a committee thereof to perform its duties, a summons shall be
issued accordingly, signed by the presiding officer or clerk of
such house, or the chairman of such committee, directed to the
sheriff or other proper officer of any county, or to the sergeant
at arms of such house, or any person deputed by him. When a
committee is appointed by each house under any joint or concurrent
resolution, and directed to sit jointly, with authority to examine
witnesses or send for persons or documents, the subpoena aforesaid
may be signed by the chairman of the committee on the part of the
Senate or the chairman of the committee on the part of the House of
(b) If any witness subpoenaed to appear at any hearing or
meeting pursuant to subsection (a) of this section shall refuse to
appear or to answer inquiries there propounded, or shall fail or
refuse to produce books, papers, documents or records within his or
her control when the same are subpoenaed, the Senate, House of
Delegates or a committee thereof, in its discretion may enforce
obedience to its subpoena by attachment, fine or imprisonment, or it may report the facts to the circuit court of Kanawha County or
any other court of competent jurisdiction and such court shall
compel obedience to the subpoena as though such subpoena had been
issued by such court in the first instance.
Witnesses subpoenaed to attend such hearings or meetings,
except officers or employees of the state, shall be allowed the
same mileage and per diem as is allowed witnesses before any petit
jury in this state.
(c) The provisions of article one, chapter six-c of this code
are expressly applicable to persons testifying pursuant to the
provisions of subsection (a) of this section.