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WEST VIRGINIA CODE
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WVC 19 - 23 - 8 C §19-23-8c. Local option election procedure; form of ballot or ballot labels; effect of such election.

(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, no license for dog racing may be issued for dog racing in any county wherein horse racing has been conducted at any time during the fifteen years preceding the application for such license, unless first approved by the voters of the county in which the proposed dog racing track is to be located. The county commission of any county in which horse racing has been conducted at any time during such fifteen-year period and in which a proposed dog racing track is to be located is hereby authorized to call a local option election for the purpose of determining the will of the qualified voters within said county as to whether the racing commission may approve an application for a license for dog racing if the application and the applicant are otherwise in compliance with the provisions of this article and this code.

(b) The county commission may order an election to determine whether it is the will of the voters of said county that dog racing be permitted in said county.

(c) Any election to determine whether it is the will of the voters of said county that dog racing be permitted in said county shall be held at a general or primary election.

(d) The county commission shall give notice of such election by publication of such notice as a Class II-0 legal advertisement in accordance with the provisions of article three, chapter fifty-nine of this code. Such notice shall be published within twenty-one consecutive days next preceding the date of said election.

(e) The ballot, or the ballot labels where voting machines are used, shall have printed thereon substantially the following:

"Shall the West Virginia Racing Commission be authorized to approve dog racing in ___________________ County, West Virginia?

[ ] Yes [ ] No

(Place a cross mark in the square opposite your choice.)"
Each individual qualified to vote in said county shall be qualified to vote at the local option election. The votes in said local option election shall be counted and returns made by the election officers and the results certified by the commissioners of election to the county commission, which shall canvass the ballots, all in accordance with the laws of this state relating to general elections insofar as the same are applicable. The county commission shall, without delay, canvass the votes cast at such local option election and certify the results thereof to the racing commission and shall transmit a certified copy of said results to the secretary of state.

(f) The racing commission may, after the certification of the results of such local option election, thereafter approve an application for a license for dog racing if a majority of the voters voting at such local option election vote yes.

(g) After an election to determine whether it is the will of the voters of the county that dog racing be permitted in said county, another election on such issue shall not be held for a period of five years.

(h) If at such election a majority of the voters of said county shall approve dog racing in said county, it is lawful for the county commission, after five years from such approval, and it shall be the duty of the county commission upon a petition in writing of qualified voters residing within the county equal to at least fifteen percent of the number of persons who voted in that county in the next preceding general election, which petition may be in any number of counterparts, to order an election to determine whether it is the will of the voters of said county that dog racing be discontinued in said county. The provisions of subsection (c), (d) and (e) of this section shall govern said election. The ballot, or the ballot labels where voting machines are used, shall have printed thereon substantially the following:

"Shall racing of dogs in _______________________ County, West Virginia be discontinued?

[ ] Yes [ ] No

(Place a cross mark in the square opposite your choice.)"
Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2014 1st Special Session
The WV Code Online is an unofficial copy of the annotated WV Code, provided as a convenience. It has NOT been edited for publication, and is not in any way official or authoritative.

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