(1) No less than nine nor more than eleven members to be appointed by the Governor, with the advice and consent of the Senate, representing community or regional interests, including economic development, commerce, banking, manufacturing, the utility industry, the mining industry, the telecommunications/data processing industry, small business, labor, tourism or agriculture. One such member shall be a member of a regional planning and development council. Of these members at least three shall represent each congressional district of the state and appointments shall be made in such a manner as to provide a broad geographical distribution of members of the council;
(2) Four at-large members to be appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Senate;
(3) The president of the West Virginia Economic Development Council; and
(4) The chair, or his or her designee, of the Tourism Commission created pursuant to the provisions of section eight of this article.
In addition, the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Delegates, or his or her designee, shall serve as ex officio nonvoting members.
(b) The Governor appoints the members of the council to four-year terms. A member whose term has expired continues to serve until the successor is duly appointed and qualified. Except as otherwise provided in this section, any member is eligible for reappointment. A vacancy is filled by appointment by the Governor in the same manner as the original appointment. A member appointed to fill a vacancy serves for the remainder of the unexpired term.
(c) Members of the council are not compensated for services performed as members, but receive reasonable and necessary expenses actually incurred in the performance of their duties in a manner consistent with guidelines of the travel management office of the Department of Administration. A majority of the voting members constitute a quorum for the purpose of conducting business. The council shall elect its chair for a term to run concurrent with the term of office of the member elected as chair. The chair is eligible for successive terms in that position.
(d) The Governor shall appoint an executive director of the West Virginia Development Office who is qualified for the position by reason of his or her extensive education and experience in the field of professional economic development. The executive director shall serve at the will and pleasure of the Governor. The salary of the director shall annually be fixed by the council. The director shall have overall management responsibility and administrative control and supervision within the West Virginia development office. It is the intention of the Legislature that the director provide professional and technical expertise in the field of professional economic and tourism development in order to support the policy-making functions of the council, but that the director not be a public officer, agent, servant or contractor within the meaning of section thirty-eight, article VI of the constitution of West Virginia and not be a statutory officer within the meaning of section one, article two, chapter five-f of this code. Subject to the provisions of the contract provided in section four of this article, the director may hire and fire economic development representatives employed pursuant to the provisions of section five of this article.
(e) The executive director of the West Virginia development office may promulgate rules to carry out the purposes and programs of the West Virginia Development Office to include generally the programs available and the procedure and eligibility of applications relating to assistance under the programs. These rules are not subject to the provisions of chapter twenty-nine-a of this code, but shall be filed with the Secretary of State. The executive director may adopt any of the rules previously promulgated by the council for community and economic development.