Senate Bill No. 270
(By Senators Jenkins, Carmichael, Cole and M. Hall)
[Introduced January 8, 2014; referred to the Committee on Economic Development; and then to the Committee on Finance.]
A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new article, designated §5B-2I-1, §5B-2I-2, §5B-2I-3, §5B-2I-4, §5B-2I-5 and §5B-2I-6, all relating to creating the Jobs Impact Statement Act; requiring a jobs impact statement for certain proposed legislation; making legislative findings; setting forth the contents of a jobs impact statement; and availability of the statements.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended by adding thereto a new article, designated §5B-2I-1, §5B-2I-2, §5B-2I-3, §5B-2I-4, §5B-2I-5 and §5B-2I-6, all to read as follows:
ARTICLE 2I. JOBS IMPACT STATEMENT.
§5B-2I-1. Short title.
This article may be cited as the "Jobs Impact Statement Act."
§5B-2I-2. Legislative findings.
The Legislature finds that, in order to maintain and create an economic climate which will sustain and promote the creation and retention of jobs in the State of West Virginia and provide employment opportunities for as many citizens as possible, it is important to understand the jobs impact of Legislature acts. The Legislature further finds that without appropriate information it may enact legislation that would adversely affect employment in the state.
§5B-2I-3. Persons empowered to request jobs impact statement; preparation by West Virginia Development Office; time limitations.
Upon written request by the Governor or the presiding officer of either house of the Legislature, proposed legislation which has an impact on the state’s economy shall be reviewed by the West Virginia Development Office, which shall prepare a jobs impact statement. The request shall be accompanied by ten copies of the proposed legislation. In preparing a jobs impact statement, the Director of the West Virginia Development Office may seek assistance or data from, or contract with, any organization or state agency which may facilitate the compilation of the jobs impact statement. Any state agency shall provide requested information within ten days from the date of the request.
The West Virginia Development Office shall return a jobs impact statement to the requesting party within twenty days of the date of the original request.
§5B-2I-4. Contents of the jobs impact statement; explanations required for omissions.
(a) General rule. -- The jobs impact statement, using generally accepted methodology, shall detail both short-term and long-term job effects of the proposed legislation and shall include, but is not limited to, the following information:
(1) A determination of the probable result of the legislation in terms of the number of West Virginia jobs which will be created, retained or eliminated;
(2) A statement of the probable net impact of the legislation on employment levels and employment patterns in West Virginia; and
(3) A determination of the relative impact on the number of West Virginia jobs by broad industrial sector, two-digit standard industrial classification.
(b) Omission. -- A jobs impact statement that omits any information required by subsection (a) of this section shall specifically note its omission, the reason for its omission, the importance of any relevant information so omitted to a complete and realistic assessment of the economic impact of the legislation and the additional time and effort required to obtain any information needed for the assessment.
§5B-2I-5. Lack of jobs impact statement not to affect consideration or validity of legislation.
If, in the opinion of the Director of the West Virginia Development Office, a jobs impact statement cannot be prepared within the statutory time frame, the unavailability of a jobs impact statement does not affect the validity of legislation which is enacted nor does the unavailability restrict consideration of pending legislation. No provision of this article alters, amends or invalidates any rule of the Senate, rule of the House of Delegates or joint rule of the Senate and House of Delegates.
§5B-2I-6. Availability of copies of jobs impact statements.
One copy of a jobs impact statement requested under section three of this article shall be made available to the Governor and the presiding officers of both houses of the Legislature, who shall distribute the statement to all members of the respective house. Copies of the statement shall be made available to the public at the office of the clerk of the respective houses of the Legislature.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to require a jobs impact statement to be completed by the West Virginia Development Office for certain proposed legislation which may impact both short-term and long-term jobs in this state. The bill creates the Jobs Impact Statement Act. The bill makes legislative findings. The bill also sets forth the contents of a jobs impact statement and the availability of the statements.
This article is new; therefore, strike-throughs and underscoring have been omitted.