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Today in the Legislature

Sunday, May 31, 2009 - 07:38 PM

Legislature Begins First Special Session of 2009
Following the conclusion of the Regular Session, the Legislature convened for the First Special Session of 2009. The agenda consists of 13 bills in each chamber with each the Senate and the House having their own versions.

To expedite the process, lawmakers read all 13 of the bills for a first time prior to the legislation being referred to committee.

The following House committees will meet tomorrow:
Finance- 11:00 a.m - 462M
Judiciary - 10:00 a.m. - 434M
Government Organization - 1:00 p.m. - 215E

The following Senate committees will meet tomorrow:
Economic Development - 9:00 a.m. - 451M
Judiciary - 10:00 a.m. - 208W

The Senate will reconvene at 11 a.m. tomorrow and the House will reconvene at 5 p.m.

›› All bills introduced on this date


Sunday, May 31, 2009 - 06:52 PM

House and Senate Pass Budget Bill
Having met on Sunday, May 31st at 4 pm and 6 pm respectively, the House of Delegates and the Senate took up the FY 2010 budget conferee report and ultimately approved the state budget, concluding the 2009 Regular Session.

Initially presented in February, the governor’s budget contained a total General Revenue appropriation of $3.9 billion. During mid-session of the 60-Day Session, the budget was revised with a reduction of $197,493,639 leaving the total General Revenue to be $3,788,000,000.

Reductions were across the board and ranged from 2 percent to 10 percent.

Some expenditure reductions included the elimination of the OPEB (Other Post Employee Benefits), freeing up $51 million; reduction of the Medicaid appropriation, freeing up $47 million (this amount will be backfilled with enhanced federal funding resulting in no reduction); and, the Governor’s Civil Contingency Fund appropriation, the Legislature’s Traffic account and the Enterprise Resource Planning System (ERP) were eliminated, freeing up $38 million in savings for the coming fiscal year.

Eighty-one million from the Federal stabilization dollars will replace immediately the reduction of $23 million for public education, $11 million for higher education and $47 million for the Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) restoring the Medicaid appropriation.

Some highlights of House Bill 2010 include:
$175,000 added to the Secretary of State’s office for technology and equipment upgrades
$25,000 restored back to the I-79 Development Council
$15,000 restored to the Coal Mine Safety and Technical Review Committee Coal Forum
$145,000 added for the Coal Mine Safety Technology Task Force
$15,000 restored to the WV Commission for Holocaust Education
$93,350 restored to the State Department of Education’s Personal Services
$1,500,000 restored to the Mountaineer Challenge Academy’s own line

The House and Senate adjourned Sine Die.



Saturday, May 30, 2009 - 11:24 AM

Senate Receives Budget Bill Conference Report
Members of the Senate met briefly today and were told of the availability of the Budget Bill Conference Report.

The Senate will reconvene for passage of the Budget Bill tomorrow, Sunday, May 31, 2009 at 6:00 p.m.

Members of the Legislature also have been notified of the Governor's Call regarding a special session the Legislature will be called into following the conclusion of the Extended Budget Session.



Saturday, May 30, 2009 - 09:43 AM

Work Complete on Six Bills Vetoed by the Governor
Throughout the week, lawmakers have amended and passed six Senate bills that were vetoed by the Governor due to technical errors.

The bills, which have been passed by both the House of Delegates and the State Senate, now go back to the Governor for his consideration. These bills include:

Senate Bill 239, allowing majority vote for certain metro government approval; Senate Bill 414, creating Governor's Office of Health Enhancement and Lifestyle Planning; Senate Bill 528, relating to certain fees collected by county clerks; Senate Bill 501, prohibiting animal gas chamber euthanasia; Senate Bill 695, relating to payment for certain state employees' unused sick leave; and, Senate Bill 715, establishing Chesapeake Bay Restoration Initiative

During a brief meeting this morning, the House made available the Budget Bill Conference Report.

The House will reconvene tomorrow at 4:00 p.m.

›› Completed Legislation

Friday, May 29, 2009 - 11:45 AM

Senate Passes Amended Animal Gas Chamber Euthanasia Bill
The Senate passed Senate Bill 501 which was amended and passed in the House earlier this week after originally being vetoed by the Governor due to technical errors. The bill prohibits animal gas chamber euthanasia.

Members of the Senate were also given an update on the Budget Bill from the Budget Conference Committee. The bill is in the process of being finalized and the members should be able to review it tomorrow.

The Budget Bill Conference Committee will meet today at 2:00 p.m. in room 451M.

The Senate will reconvene tomorrow at 11:00 a.m.



Friday, May 29, 2009 - 11:39 AM

House Passes Amended Chesapeake Bay Restoration Initiative Bill
The House passed Senate Bill 715 which was amended and passed in the Senate earlier this week after originally being vetoed by the Governor due to technical errors. The bill establishes the Chesapeake Bay Restoration Initiative.

Members of the House were also given an update on the Budget Bill from the Budget Conference Committee. The bill is in the process of being finalized and the members should be able to review it tomorrow.

The Budget Bill Committee will be meeting today at 2:00 p.m. in room 451M.

The House will reconvene tomorrow at 9:00 a.m.



Thursday, May 28, 2009 - 12:50 PM

Senate Appoints Six Budget Committee Conferees
The Senate met briefly this afternoon to appoint the six conferees that will conference with the House conferees to reach an agreement on the Budget Bill.

The appointed conferees are as follows:
Senate Finance Chair Walt Helmick (D - Pocahontas)
Senator Edwin Bowman (D - Hancock)
Senator Roman Prezioso (D - Marion)
Senator Robert H. Plymale (D - Wayne)
Senator John Unger II (D - Berkeley)
Senator Karen L. Facemyer (R - Jackson)

The Budget Bill Conference Committee will meet today at 2:00 p.m. in room 451M.

The following committee will meet tomorrow:
Confirmations - 10:00 a.m. - 208W

The Senate will reconvene tomorrow at 11:00 a.m.



Thursday, May 28, 2009 - 12:28 PM

House Passes Five Amended Bills, Appoints Budget Committee Conferees
This afternoon, the House passed five Senate bills all of which were amended and passed by the Senate earlier this week after originally being vetoed by the Governor due to technical errors. One of the bills to pass was Senate Bill 239 which allows a simple majority vote for certain metro government approval. Another bill also passed was Senate Bill 528 which relate to crime victims' compensation awards.

The House also appointed six members to the Budget Bill Conference Committee. Those appointed were:

House Finance Chair, Delegate H.K. White
House Finance Vice-Chair, Delegate Thomas Campbell
Delegate Mary Poling
Delegate Don Perdue
Delegate K. Steven Kominar
Delegate William Anderson

The Budget Bill Conference Committee will meet today at 2:00 p.m. in room 451M.

The House will reconvene tomorrow at 11:00 a.m.



Wednesday, May 27, 2009 - 06:49 PM

Lawmakers Complete Work on 11 Bills Vetoed by the Governor.
West Virginia lawmakers made corrections to 11 House measures which were vetoed due to technical flaws within the bills.

The bills, which have been passed by both the House of Delegates and the State Senate, now go back to the Governor for his consideration. These bills include:

House Bill 2423, relating to the Board of Medical Imaging and Radiation Therapy Technology; House Bill 2535, creating a tax credit for certain solar energy systems; House Bill 2701, relating to the escape from custody of the Director of Juvenile Services; House Bill 2771, including political subdivisions in the Alcohol and Drug-Free Workplace Act; House Bill 2920, making a second conviction for petit larceny a felony; House Bill 2926, establishing a procedure for challenging a candidate's qualifications for elected office; House Bill 3120, increasing the West Virginia Prosecuting Attorneys Institute's executive council; House Bill 3170, clarifying the filing and review of the periodic accountings of conservators; House Bill 3194, making it a crime to knowingly file false information with the Secretary of State; House Bill 3197, authorizing municipalities to permit nonpolice officers to issue citations for littering; and, House Bill 3288, relating to mental health parity.

Work continues this week on the Budget Bill as well as several Senate bills which the Governor vetoed following the 2009 Regular Session.

›› Completed Legislation

Wednesday, May 27, 2009 - 06:45 PM

Senate Amends, Then Passes, House Version of the Budget Bill
The Senate amended the Budget Bill that passed the House earlier in the day to include their version of the bill and passed it, sending it back to the House for consideration.

The Senate also passed Senate Bill 715 which was vetoed by the Governor due to technical errors. This bill establishes the Chesapeake Bay Restoration Initiative.

The Senate will reconvene tomorrow at 11:00 a.m.



Wednesday, May 27, 2009 - 05:41 PM

House Passes Budget Bill
During the evening session, the House suspended the constitutional rules requiring a bill be read on three separate days and passed the Budget Bill.

The bill was then communicated to the Senate for further consideration.

The House will reconvene tomorrow at 11:00 a.m.



Wednesday, May 27, 2009 - 04:19 PM

Afternoon Session Sees Budget Bill Discussion
During today's afternoon session, House members discussed the Budget Bill , which was read a second time.

The House will reconvene this evening at 5:00 p.m.










Wednesday, May 27, 2009 - 12:15 PM

Senate Passes 11 Amended Bills
The Senate passed 11 House bills this morning, all of which were amended and passed by the House yesterday after originally being vetoed by the Governor due to technical errors.

House Bill 2535 will now create a tax credit for certain solar energy systems.

House Bill 2771 relates to the West Virginia Alcohol and Drug-Free Workplace Act while House Bill 2926 establishes a procedure for challenging a candidate's qualifications for elected office.

House Bill 3197 authorizes municipalities to permit nonpolice officers to issue citations for littering.

The Senate will reconvene this evening at 6:00 p.m.



Tuesday, May 26, 2009 - 06:59 PM

Senate Overrides Five Veto Messages, Reads Budget Bill a First Time
The Senate met this evening and took up five Senate bills the Governor had vetoed due to technical reasons such as Senate Bill 239 which allows a majority vote for certain metro government approval.

Senate Bill 501 was also taken up for immediate consideration. This bill prohibits animal gas chamber euthanasia.

The Senate also received the committee report on the Budget Bill which was then read a first time.

The Senate will reconvene tomorrow at 11:00 a.m.



Tuesday, May 26, 2009 - 05:15 PM

Budget Bill Read a First Time in the House
The House met briefly this evening to receive the Committee Report on the Budget Bill. The bill was then read a first time.

The House will reconvene tomorrow at 3:00 p.m.



Tuesday, May 26, 2009 - 12:51 PM

Senate Reconvenes the Extended Budget Session
The Senate reconvened briefly today at Noon to kick off the Extended Budget Session. They will now begin to work to finish the Fiscal Year 2010 state budget.

The following committee will meet today:
Finance - 4:00 p.m. - 451M

The following committee will meet tomorrow:
Confirmations - 10:00 a.m. - 208W

The Senate is in recess until 6:00 p.m. this evening



Tuesday, May 26, 2009 - 12:49 PM

House Overrides 11 of the Governor's Veto Messages
On the first day of the extended budget session, the House took up for immediate consideration 11 House bills the Governor had vetoed for technical reasons such as, House Bill 2535 which creates a tax credit for certain solar energy systems.

Another bill taken up for immediate consideration was House Bill 3194 which makes it a misdemeanor to knowingly file false information with the Secretary of State.

The following committee will meet today:

Finance- 1:00 p.m.- 451M

The House is in recess until 5:00 p.m. today.



Tuesday, May 26, 2009 - 09:52 AM

Lawmakers Return to Charleston to Work on State Budget, Veto Messages
West Virginia legislators meet at the State Capitol today to reconvene the Extended Budget Session and finish work on the Fiscal Year 2010 state budget. Lawmakers also are allowed to receive messages concerning vetoed legislation from the Regular Session and address any changes needed to those measures which may then be passed and sent back to the Governor for his approval.

Also on tap for lawmakers are the May Interim Meetings:
May 26 - 3:00 p.m. - Post Audits - 451M
May 27 - 12:00 noon - Commission on Special Investigations - 451M
May 28 - 12:00 noon - Joint Committee on Government and Finance - 451M


Both the House of Delegates and Senate will meet today, Tuesday, May 26, 2009 at 12:00 p.m. in their respective Chambers.





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