House of Delegates

West Virginia House of Delegates
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

With the passage of their budget bill behind them, members of the House are working their way through a number of bills left on their agenda this legislative session. West Virginia Public Broadcasting took a closer look at two of the bills approved in the chamber Thursday.

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

A bill to legalize medical marijuana in West Virginia is heading to Gov. Jim Justice for a signature.

Members of the House accepted Senate technical amendments to the bill Thursday night, sending it on for gubernatorial approval. 

John Shott
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

A bill to legalize medical marijuana will be put to a vote in the House of Delegates Tuesday. Over the weekend, a handful of delegates from both sides of the aisle met with attorneys to discuss potential amendments to the Senate bill that were discussed in a late night floor session Monday. The bill has now taken a much different form than when it was approved in the state Senate just last week.

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Advocates for low-income West Virginians are urging the House of Delegates to defeat a Senate-passed bill to establish a computerized system to verify whether 176,000 households getting food stamps are eligible.

Following pilot programs in nine counties, opponents say the state will spend $15 million for an outside contractor, find little fraud in the federally funded program whose benefit is about $74 a month and set reporting requirements that will knock people off.

Shawn Fluharty
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The House of Delegates has passed a bill that would effectively put an end to greyhound racing in the state, according to its opponents. Senate Bill 437 discontinues the Greyhound Breeding and Development Fund, putting about $14 million back into excess lottery revenue accounts for lawmakers to appropriate in the upcoming fiscal year. The bill was approved last week in the Senate on a 19 to 15 vote.

Tim Miley
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

A bill to legalize medical marijuana in the state is bypassing the committee process, putting it on the fast track for a vote in the House. Senate Bill 386 was read for a first time on the floor Thursday night after a 54 to 40 procedural vote to bring it straight to the floor.

The vote has been called historic in the chamber. But several delegates argued pulling the bill out of the committee process was the only way members would get to put the medical marijuana bill to a vote this session.

Mike Folk
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

A senate bill to legalize medical marijuana in the state is being fast-tracked through the West Virginia House of Delegates. Senate Bill 386, which passed out of the state Senate Wednesday night on a 28 to 6 vote, would create the West Virginia Medical Cannabis Act, legalizing medical marijuana in West Virginia.

Jeff Eldridge
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

A bill to eliminate the West Virginia Greyhound Breeding Development Fund is making its way through the House. It’s been on second reading, or the amendment stage, since Tuesday, but due to a laundry list of amendments and some heated debate, consideration was postponed until Thursday.

Phil Isner
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia House of Delegates has passed a bill that will encourage the creation of substance abuse treatment facilities in the state.

Eric Nelson
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia House of Delegates has killed another revenue increasing bill – one that would’ve generated an estimated $215 million in three years.

Pat McGeehan
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia House of Delegates has killed a bill that leadership says was one of the keys to balancing the 2018 budget. The bill was presented on behalf of Governor Jim Justice and originally would have raised $450 million in new taxes but drastically changed as it worked through the committee process.

Gary Howell
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Delegates voted on 12 pieces of legislation in the House yesterday, including one that creates a centralized state vehicle inventory system. The bill was the result of both an interim study and a request from Gov. Jim Justice. 

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Delegates in the House Finance committee met Saturday afternoon to hear yet another budget proposal from Republican leadership. Earlier this month, House and Senate leaders released their budget framework, but not a budget bill.

House of Delegates
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photograhy

The House of Delegates passed a bill that would end the Racetrack Modernization Fund three years early.

The fund was created by the Legislature in 2011 to provide matching dollars for the state’s four racetrack casinos to upgrade video lottery and other digital games.

House Finance Committee
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Members of the House Finance Committee are expected to get their first look at the chamber’s budget for the 2018 fiscal year in a meeting this Saturday. In order to balance it, lawmakers will have to close an estimated $497 million hole.

Roger Hanshaw
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Thirty percent of West Virginians do not have access to basic broadband services as defined by federal law, according to the Federal Communications Commission.

When you look at just the rural parts of West Virginia, that percent increases to 48.

House Bill 3093 aims to change that.

Chad Lovejoy
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

A House Judiciary Subcommittee reconsidered a bill Thursday that barely made it through the legislative process on the final night of the 2016 session.

That bill required West Virginians to bring some form of identification with them when they go to cast a ballot at their polling place. It also set up an automatic voter registration process between the Secretary of the State’s office and the Division of Motor Vehicles.

Delegates initially intended to gut parts of that law altogether this year, but have since worked on a compromise.

Stephen Baldwin
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Both the House and Senate are considering bills this year to change the state’s education standards once again. It’s a reoccurring theme at the statehouse since Republican lawmakers took control of the chamber in 2015.

In the Senate, lawmakers have approved a bill that does not replace the current college and career ready standards taught in schools, but calls for a cyclical review of those standards with the input of West Virginia teachers.

In the House, however, the discussion over potential changes is just beginning.

Jason Barrett, Erikka Storch
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

As lawmakers try to find ways to deal with the state’s financial problems, the House Finance Committee discussed a bill that could put $9 million back in the budget. The bill originating in the House’s Finance Committee would end the Racetrack Modernization Fund.

On The Legislature Today, Governor Jim Justice is declaring a symbolic State of Emergency in West Virginia due to Republican plans to cut Medicaid dollars.

Legislative leaders released their budget framework last week that would cut the program by $50 million, they say. Justice say the cuts will result in a healthcare crisis in the state.

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