CHARLESTON, WV (LOOTPRESS) – Today, the House of Delegates passed two resolutions and seven bills and postponed eight bills.
Senate Concurrent Resolution 24 recognizes and honors the First Responders Honor Boar’s nominees for the Medal of Valor. The Medal of Valor is presented to those who go above and beyond the call of duty as firefighters, law enforcement officers, emergency medical services personnel, and other professionals. The individuals nominated, recognized, and honored West Virginia State Police Corporal David S. Fry, Upshur County Department of Homeland Security/County Emergency Manager, Deputy Director Derek V. Long, and Upshur County Sheriff John Michael Coffman.
House Joint Resolution 21 proposes an amendment to the WV Constitution, which prohibits individuals who are not US citizens from voting in elections within the state. If the resolution passes both the House and the Senate, it will be on the ballot of the 2024 general election.
House Bill 5018 gives the DEP authority to regulate community air monitoring programs to ensure proper scientific methods for data collection and evaluation are followed. The data cannot be used to for regulatory action or as evidence in court.
Opponents of the bill had issues with not allowing the data to be used as evidence. They felt that it is the court’s decision what should and should not be admissible in court proceedings. Some said the bill is imposing on the judicial system.
Proponents stated the bill does not attack or health community air monitoring. The Secretary of DEP can use the data from air monitoring to decide if an investigation may be needed to protect communities.
House Bill 5084 requires retailers to verify indentation and age upon the purchase of vapes and vape products.
House Bill 5091 removes the requirement that critical infrastructure be enclosed by a fence or barrier or marked with no entry sign. The bill increases penalties for the destruction or theft of critical infrastructure. The bill states anyone who willfully damages or destroys equipment in a critical infrastructure facility causing damages more than $2,500 is guilty of a felony and shall be fined $25,000 to $100,000 or be imprisoned for one to five years. For a second offense, the individual would be guilty of a felony and fined between $100,000 and $500,000 and/or be imprisoned for five to ten years.
House Bill 5122 removes the age cap of 45 years for deputy sheriffs and the age cap of 40 years for all municipal police officers starting their careers.
House Bill 5257 states the pay scale for magistrate court clerks, magistrate assistants, magistrate court deputy clerks, family court secretary-clerks, and family court judges shall be set by the Administrative Director of the Supreme Court.
The House is adjourned until tomorrow, February 7, 2023, at 11 a.m.
The Judiciary Committee will hold a Public Hearing on Thursday, February 8, 2023, at 8:30 a.m. in the House Chamber for House Bill 5243 – Relating to Women’s Bill of Rights.