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Introduced Version House Concurrent Resolution 125 History

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HOUSE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION 125

(By Delegates Hansen), Bates, Pyles, Pushkin, Williams, Skaff, Walker and S. Brown

[Introduced February 28, 2020]

 

Requesting the Joint Committee on Government and Finance study the benefits of creating a West Virginia State Bank to facilitate access to capital for returning veterans, low income entrepreneurs and for underserved communities, to promote access to capital for developing sustainable agricultural and community investment projects and to study the best practices and management structures necessary to create a successful State Bank.

Whereas, Having access to financial services and capital is necessary to make investments across this state from developing farming opportunities to community reinvestment and a State Bank can play a vital role in providing access to capital by partnering with financial institutions to stimulate and facilitate investment in this state; and

Whereas, Cities and municipalities across this state are wrestling with blighted and dilapidated buildings and citizens in these communities have limited resources to address these problems without access to financial services and capital to invest and improve our communities; and

Whereas, West Virginia had a food import, export deficit of approximately $6 billion in 2018, where as a state we imported more than $7 billion in agricultural consumer products and produce in state less than $1 billion for export in agricultural consumer products annually; and

Whereas, A State Bank investing in state residents and promoting in state agriculture has the potential to create jobs and provide for developing a wide range of local agricultural projects, products and farming opportunities; and

Whereas, A West Virginia State Bank with its mission to provide access to capital for resident small businesses and entrepreneurial minded individuals greater access to capital by partnering with local banks, increasing local lending through measures such as guaranteeing larger loans and backing smaller, riskier loans that benefit this state and our citizens; and

Whereas, West Virginia should strive to learn from the highly successful Bank of North Dakota and create a prudent state bank management structure that is insulated from political influence with an advisory board that consists of finance experts and executives who are experienced bankers to promote state bank operations and lending decisions that are made by professionals for the explicit purpose of making investments in this state for the benefit of our citizens; and

Whereas, Small businesses represent the largest block of employers in this state and loans for small business are consistently about half of the national average and without access to capital, businesses cannot begin to operate, and small business startups don’t start up, entrepreneurship gets curtailed, and growth is hindered; therefore, be it

Resolved by the Legislature of West Virginia:

That the Joint Committee on Government and Finance study the benefits of creating a West Virginia State Bank to facilitate access to capital for returning veterans, low income entrepreneurs and for underserved communities, to promote access to capital for developing sustainable agricultural and community investment projects and to study the best practices and management structures necessary to create a successful State Bank; and, be it

Further Resolved, That the Joint Committee on Government and Finance contract with the Department of Public Administration at West Virginia University, at a cost of up to $50,000, to prepare a report regarding implementing a State Bank of West Virginia, including possible funding mechanisms, the structure of the Bank Board of Directors, and by identifying the target lending clients and entrepreneurial purposes that benefit and support the people of this state and to report to the Legislature on or before December 31, 2020 on their findings, and recommendations, together with any drafts of legislation necessary to effectuate any recommendations; and, be it

Further Resolved, That the Joint Committee on Government and Finance report to the Regular Session of the Legislature 2021 on its findings, conclusions and recommendations, together with any drafts of legislation necessary to effectuate any recommendations; and, be it

Further Resolved, That the State Treasurer, the West Virginia Division of Financial Institutions, the West Virginia Development Office and the Division of Financial Institutions shall cooperate with the Legislature and provide information requested for this study; and, be it

Further Resolved, That the expenses necessary to conduct this study, prepare a report and draft necessary legislation be paid from legislative appropriations to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance.

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