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Introduced Version Senate Bill 541 History

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SB541 intr
Senate Bill No. 541

(By Senators Jenkins, Unger, Palumbo and Oliverio)

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[Introduced February 11, 2010; referred to the Committee on Education; and then to the Committee on the Judiciary.]

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A BILL to amend and reenact §17C-12-7 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to increasing the penalties for overtaking and passing a school bus stopped for the purpose of receiving and discharging children.

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 to read as follows:
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 may 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 for a first offense, shall be fined not less than fifty $150 or more than two hundred dollars $500, or imprisoned confined in the county jail not more than six months, or both fined and imprisoned confined. Upon conviction of a second offense of this statute, the driver shall be fined $500, or confined in jail not more than six months, or both fined and confined. Upon conviction of a third or subsequent offense of this statute, the driver shall be fined $500, and confined not less than twenty-four hours in jail but not more than six months. If the identity of the driver cannot be ascertained, then any owner or lessee of the vehicle in violation of this subsection is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be fined not less than twenty-five $50 nor more than one hundred dollars $200. The conviction shall does 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) 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.
(c) The State Board of Education shall write a policy governing the idling of school buses.

NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to increase the fine for overtaking and passing a school bus stopped for the purpose of receiving or discharging children.

Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.
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