The 2018 legislative session is FINALLY over, and this is our wrap-up edition of the Capital Eye. Of the 1,778 bills introduced, 260 made it through the sausage grinder to the other end. They all will be signed, ignored by the governor (and become law without his signature), or vetoed. We’re asking him to veto two of them (we’d prefer he veto scores but that’s not going to happen), so read on for why, and make your calls if so moved.
A big THANK YOU to all who came to the Capitol, sent emails, and/or made calls on important legislation. Now that the session is over, we’re working hard to catch up on all the work left undone as we roamed the marble halls. Thanks also to those who sent in checks of support or donated online. The greens you sent in helped keep us going through early morning public hearings, evening committee meetings, and long floor sessions.
It’s never too late to send in a membership renewal or donation as the fight continues as we pivot to federal issues and make sure that voters ‘Remember in November’.
Yours for Action,
Team WV CAG
PS: We hope you can join us for one or more of these upcoming events.
2018 Legislative Wrap-UpThe 2018 legislative session is FINALLY over, and this is our wrap-up edition. In this article: A Strike and Two Vetoes?, 5% Raise and PEIA Task Force Reopen Schools, Collateral Damage, Timber Bill Cut Down, SB 600 = Tons of BS, Regulation Two-Fer, Guns-R-Us, Cannabis Sabotage, and Another Shade of Green. Tagged: Energy, Healthcare, Kids and families, Pollution, Workers Two Constitutional Amendments Headed for the Ballot in NovemberDuring the 2018 legislative session, legislators approved resolutions putting two proposed constitutional amendments on the November 6 general election ballot. On the final night of the session, the House and Senate agreed to a compromise version of SJR 3, the Judicial Budget Oversight Amendment, which would amend the state constitution to give the Legislature oversight of the judiciary’s budget. In addition to SJR 3, the Legislature also approved another proposed constitutional amendment (SJR 12) that is being deceptively explained as an effort to take away Medicaid funding for abortion, but which aims to take away reproductive rights for women more broadly.Tagged: Budget priorities, Civil Justice, Healthcare, Inequality Tell Governor Justice: Don’t Let People Go Hungry, Veto HB 4001A some what watered down version of HB 4001, which would further restrict access to food assistance (SNAP) by imposing work requirements on certain recipients, passed both houses of the legislature close to midnight on the final day of the session. This is still a bad bill that hurts vulnerable people and we need to urge Governor Justice for a veto. Please contact Governor Justice today and tell him not to let people go hungry. Tell him to veto HB 4001. Governor’s Office Phone: (304) 558-2000 or 1-(888)-438-2731Tagged: Inequality, Poverty, SNAP Tell Governor Justice to Veto HB 4006The same day the Governor signed the bill to provide pay raises for teachers and public employees, shady deals started happening under the dome. Late that night, the Senate Education Committee advanced a bill to eliminate the Department of Education and the Arts (HB 4006). The approved the bill on Friday, and, on Saturday, the House agreed to the Senate's amended version of HB 4006, sending the bill to Governor Justice for his signature or veto. The bill puts programs like AmeriCorps and Energy Express in jeopardy. These programs, our children, and our people are too important to gamble with for partisan and personal politics. Please contact Governor Justice today and tell him to veto HB 4006. Tagged: Education, Kids and families Water Policy UpdateSeveral bad bills that would have been harmful to water quality and the environment, died this legislative session thanks to the efforts of our friends at the WV Rivers Coalition (WVRC) and the WV Environmental Council (WVEC). Two bills passed that our allies were able to secure improvements to. Read more here, then check out the legislative wrap-ups from WVRC and WVEC. Tagged: Pollution, Water
Redistricting Reform Stalls; Election Transparency Fails to AdvanceUnfortunately, the two election related bills we most wanted to see pass this session failed to reach the Governor’s desk. A bill to reform the redistricting process – the redrawing of the boundaries of legislative and congressional districts – made significant progress before stalling in the House of Delegates. While a bill to improve election transparency and strengthen disclosure of political spending was never taken up by its assigned committee. Here's is a summary of what happened with these, other election, and ethics bills during the 2018 legislative session.Tagged: Clean elections, Our children our future