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Engrossed Committee Substitute House Bill 3105 History

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COM SUB 2 LINES
ENGROSSED

COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE

FOR

H. B. 3105

(By Delegates Klempa, Hutchins, Schoen, Ferro, Hamilton,

Ennis, Brown, Varner, Ellem, Pethtel and Caputo)


(Originating in the Committee on Finance)

[March 24, 2009]



A BILL to amend and reenact §17C-12-7 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended; and to amend and reenact §60A-4-406 of said code, all relating to increasing the safety of school children that use school buses; increasing the criminal penalties for failure to stop a vehicle before reaching a school bus with flashing warning signal lights, and providing additional circumstances which increase the periods of ineligibility for parole upon sentences for certain felony convictions for the distribution of controlled substances in the proximity of students awaiting, boarding or exiting a school bus.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §17C-12-7 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted; and that §60A-4-406 be amended and reenacted, all to read as follows:
CHAPTER 17C. TRAFFIC REGULATIONS AND LAWS OF THE ROAD.

ARTICLE 12. SPECIAL STOPS REQUIRED.

§17C-12-7. Overtaking and passing school bus; penalties; signs and warning lights upon buses; removal of warning lights, lettering, etc., upon sale of buses; highways with separate roadways; limitation on idling.

(a) The driver of a vehicle, upon meeting or overtaking from either direction any school bus which has stopped for the purpose of receiving or discharging any school children, shall stop the vehicle before reaching the school bus when there is in operation on the school bus flashing warning signal lights, as referred to in section eight of this article, and the driver shall not proceed until the school bus resumes motion, or is signaled by the school bus driver to proceed or the visual signals are no longer actuated. This section applies wherever the school bus is receiving or discharging children including, but not limited to, any street, highway, parking lot, private road or driveway: Provided, That the driver of a vehicle upon a controlled access highway need not stop upon meeting or passing a school bus which is on a different roadway or adjacent to the highway and where pedestrians are not permitted to cross the roadway. Any driver acting in violation of this subsection is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be fined not less than fifty $150 nor more than two hundred dollars $500, or imprisoned confined in the county jail not more than six months, or both fined and imprisoned. If the identity of the driver cannot be ascertained, then any owner or lessee of the vehicle in violation of this subsection shall be fined not less than twenty-five $50 nor more than one hundred dollars $200. The conviction shall not subject the owner or lessee to further administrative or other penalties for the offense, notwithstanding other provisions of this code to the contrary.
(b) When the identified driver of a vehicle willfully, wantonly, or with reckless disregard violates the provisions of subsection (a) of this section and the violation causes serious bodily injury to any person other than the driver, he or she is guilty of a felony, and upon conviction, shall be confined not less than one year and no more than three years and shall be fined not less than five hundred dollars and not more than two thousand dollars. When the identified driver of a vehicle willfully, wantonly or with reckless disregard violates the provisions of subsection (a) of this section, and the violation causes death, he or she is guilty of a felony, and upon conviction, shall be confined not less than one year and no more than ten years and shall be fined not less than one thousand dollars and not more than three thousand dollars.
(c) Every bus used for the transportation of school children shall bear upon the front and rear of the bus a plainly visible sign containing the words "school bus" in letters not less than eight inches in height. When a contract school bus is being operated upon a highway for purposes other than the actual transportation of children either to or from school, all markings on the contract school bus indicating "school bus" shall be covered or concealed. Any school bus sold or transferred to another owner by a county board of education, agency or individual shall have all flashing warning lights disconnected and all lettering removed or permanently obscured, except when sold or transferred for the transportation of school children.
(d) The state board of education shall write a policy governing the idling of school buses.
CHAPTER 60A. UNIFORM CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES ACT.

ARTICLE 4. OFFENSES AND PENALTIES.
§60A-4-406. Distribution to persons under the age of 18 years by persons over the age of 21 years; distribution by persons 18 years of age or over in or on, or within 1,000 feet of, school or college or within 100 feet of students awaiting, boarding or exiting a school bus; increasing mandatory period of incarceration prior to parole eligibility.

(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, a person is ineligible for parole for a period of three years if he or she is sentenced to the custody of the commissioner of corrections for service of a sentence of incarceration and is convicted of a felony violation under the provisions of subdivision (i), subsection (a), section four hundred one of this article for distribution of a controlled substance and:
(1) Is 21 years of age or older at the time of the distribution upon which the conviction is based, and the person to whom the controlled substance was distributed was under the age of 18 years at the time of the distribution; or
(2) Is 18 years of age or older and the distribution upon which the conviction is based occurred in or on, or within 1,000 feet of, the real property comprising a public or private elementary, vocational or secondary school or a public or private college, junior college or university in this state, or within the first 100 feet within the view of students awaiting, boarding or exiting a school bus, excluding the interior of all buildings except school bus stop shelters. For purposes of this subsection, "School bus" means a commercial motor vehicle used to transport preprimary, primary, or secondary school students from home-to- school, from school-to-home, or to and from school sponsored events. School bus does not include a bus used as a common carrier.
(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, a person is ineligible for parole for a period of two years if he or she is sentenced to the custody of the commissioner of corrections for service of a sentence of incarceration and is convicted of a felony violation under the provisions of subdivision (ii), subsection (a), section four hundred one of this article for distribution of a controlled substance and:
(1) Is 21 years of age or older at the time of the distribution upon which the conviction is based, and the person to whom the controlled substance was distributed was under the age of 18 years at the time of the distribution; or
(2) Is 18 years of age or older and the distribution upon which the conviction is based occurred in or on, or within 1,000 feet of, the real property comprising a public or private elementary, vocational or secondary school or a public or private college, junior college or university in this state, or within the first 100 feet within the view of students awaiting, boarding or exiting a school bus, excluding the interior of all buildings except school bus stop shelters. For purposes of this subsection, "School bus" means a commercial motor vehicle used to transport preprimary, primary, or secondary school students from home-to- school, from school-to-home, or to and from school sponsored events. School bus does not include a bus used as a common carrier.
(c) The existence of any fact which would make any person subject to the provisions of this section may not be considered unless the fact is clearly stated and included in the indictment or presentment by which the person is charged and is either:
(1) Found by the court upon a plea of guilty or nolo contendere;
(2) Found by the jury, if the matter be tried before a jury, upon submission to the jury of a special interrogatory for such purpose; or
(3) Found by the court, if the matter be tried by the court without a jury.
(d) Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the sentencing alternatives made available to circuit court judges under other provisions of this code.
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