(a) The state fire commission shall appoint a state fire marshal in accordance with the qualifications approved by the state civil service commission as provided in article six, chapter twenty-nine of this code. He can be removed by the commission at any time for neglect of duty or other conduct unbecoming his office as provided in article six, chapter twenty-nine of this code.
(b) The state fire marshal, within policy established by the state fire commission, shall have all responsibility for the implementation of fire safety programs in this state designated to minimize fire hazards and disaster and loss of life and property from these causes. These responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the establishment and enforcement of fire safety practices throughout the state, preventive inspection and correction activities, coordination of fire safety programs with volunteer and paid fire departments and critical analysis and evaluation of West Virginia's fire loss statistics for determination of problems and solutions.
(c) The state fire marshal may employ such technical, clerical, stenographic and other personnel and fix their compensation and may incur such expenses as may be necessary in the performance of the duties of his office within the appropriation therefor. Employees of the fire marshal's office shall be members of the state civil service system, and all appointments of the office shall be a part of the classified service under the civil service system.
Further, any individual who is employed to conduct criminal investigations or who may become actively involved in matters of a criminal nature shall first be required to pass a civil service examination testing his or her competency and proficiency in the law of arrest, search and seizure and other criminal procedures relating to the powers granted to the state fire marshal pursuant to the provisions of this article.
(d) The state fire marshal and other personnel of the state fire marshal's office shall be provided with appropriate office space, furniture, equipment, supplies, stationery and printing in the same manner as provided for other state agencies.
Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2013 1st Special Session
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