From The Well

Day 50


At the center of the West Virginia state Capitol is an area known as The Well.

It is the informal gathering place for lobbyists, reporters, constituents and lawmakers.

Centrally located between the chambers of the House of Delegates and Senate,

The Well is often where information is shared, alliances are formed, and deals are made.



House of Delegates



Some high-profile bills become inactive


On the final day to move bills to the Senate, the House of Delegates started Wednesday by placing two controversial bills on its inactive calendar.


There was still some drama because that didn’t mean the bills couldn’t be made active as the day moved on. The moves cast their viability into serious doubt.


One was HB4753, which would restrict services provided to the homeless at least 1,000 feet away from schools and day-care locations. The bill sparked controversy, particularly in Charleston, and most speakers expressed views against the bill during a public hearing earlier this week


That bill was on the House’s “inactive calendar” to start the day, but the House Rules Committee to return the bill to the “active calendar” in the afternoon. It remained possible that Delegates might take up that bill. But, just before 5 p.m., the House adjourned without getting to it.


The other bill changed to inactive was HB4840, which would have made major changes to the state Office of Miner’s Health Safety and Training. The bill would have shifted the agency’s goals from enforcing and executing the state’s mining laws to assisting mine operators and providing “alternative mechanisms of enforcement.”


That bill remained on the “inactive calendar” as the House returned to Wednesday’s afternoon session.


Click here to read more from WVMetroNews.






‘Anti-Racism Act’ heads to House


After about an hour of debate Wednesday, the West Virginia Senate passed an “Anti-Racism Act” in response to the national dialogue about the role of race in society.


Wednesday was the last day to pass bills from their chamber of origin to the other.


SB498 passed 21-12, sending the cultural hot potato to the House.


A similar bill expired last week on a committee deadline in the House of Delegates.


Click here to read more from WVMetroNews.






House passes bill to divide large agency


The House of Delegates passed a bill Wednesday that would break up the Department of Health and Human Resources, a large agency that deals with many chronic health conditions and challenges facing vulnerable citizens.


Delegates passed HB4020 83-11 on the last day to advance legislation to the other chamber. Under the bill, splitting up DHHR would be finalized by July 2023.


“I think this is long overdue,” said House Health Chairman Matthew Rohrbach of Cabell County.


Click here to read more from WVMetroNews.






Senate Committee advances 7 bills


With the conclusion of West Virginia’s 2022 legislative session less than two weeks away, the Senate Health and Human Resources Committee met on Tuesday with seven bills on its agenda that were related to the medical profession and originated within the House of Delegates.


The legislation ranged from a drug donation program to the creation of a bone marrow and a peripheral blood-stem donation awareness program to the level and type of treatments pharmacists can provide.


Click here to read more from West Virginia Press News Sharing.



Health departments express need for funds


As the West Virginia Legislature works on next year’s budget, local health departments in West Virginia want to make sure it takes care of them.


A. Jay Root of the West Virginia Local Health Department Association told WMOV-Radio in Ravenswood that local health leaders from the 48 health departments want to make sure legislative leaders are able to allocate funding to maintain the level of care that health departments established during the pandemic.


A news release said local health departments currently receive $14.16 million in annual state funding. An additional $7.46 million is needed to sustain the existing infrastructure and ensure the departments’ promotion, prevention, and protection activities for public health in West Virginia, Mr. Root said.


Click here to read more from WVMetroNews.






House committee advances oil and gas bills


Two Senate bills SB650 and SB694 moved Tuesday out of the House Committee on Energy and Manufacturing. They involve mineral property rights and oil and gas interests for horizontal well drilling have


As explained by Counsel, SB650 would strike out language at the beginning of WV Code §37B-1-4 and remove the “seven or more royalty owners” condition for the code to be applicable.


Click here to read more from West Virginia Press News Sharing.






House OKs bill to reallocate magistrates


The House of Delegates passed a bill Wednesday that calls for the reallocation of magistrates in the state’s 55 counties.


The measure, HB2910, would reallocate magistrates according to population and guarantee there would be at least two magistrates per county.


House Judiciary Committee Chairman Moore Capito of Kanawha County told fellow delegates the bill doesn’t reduce the total number of magistrates the state currently has.


“One-hundred and fifty-eight (158) is the floor with this bill. In fact, the number of magistrates in the state of West Virginia could increase but it cannot decrease,” Chairman Capito said.


The last reallocation of the magistrates came 20 years ago.


Click here to read more from WVMetroNews.



Footnote for Readers



Access to some of the stories in From The Well may require a subscription to that news outlet. H2C Public Policy Strategists has no control over the terms and conditions other news outlets set to access their content.



Legislative Calendar




Click here

for the full session calendar

of the 85th West Virginia Legislature.



WV Legislature
Legislature Live


Meeting Notices
Proposed Rules


Legislature Blog
Glossary of Terms


Some information in this update is collected from the WV Legislature’s Daily/Weekly Blogs.


Hartman Harman Cosco, Public Policy Strategists, LLC, (H2C) is a strategically assembled bipartisan lobbying firm comprised of legal, communications and policy professionals. H2C possesses the insight and intuition that only comes from decades of hands on experience leading community and statewide initiatives.






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