Senate Joint Resolution No. 6

(By Senator Bailey)


[Originating in the Committee on Finance;

reported February 4, 2003.]


Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the State of West Virginia, amending section thirty-three, article VI thereof, relating to legislative compensation reform; numbering and designating such proposed amendment; and providing a summarized statement of the purpose of such proposed amendment.

Resolved by the Legislature of West Virginia, two thirds of the members elected to each house agreeing thereto:
That the question of ratification or rejection of an amendment to the Constitution of the State of West Virginia be submitted to the voters of the state at the next general election to be held in the year two thousand four, which proposed amendment is that section thirty-three, article VI thereof, be amended to read as follows:
§33. Compensation and expenses of members.
Members of the Legislature shall receive such the increases in compensation in connection with the performance of their respective duties as members of the Legislature and such increases in allowances for travel and other expenses in connection therewith as shall be (1) established in a resolution submitted to the Legislature that are determined by the citizens legislative compensation commission. hereinafter created and (2) thereafter enacted into general law by the Legislature at a regular session thereof, subject to such requirements and conditions as shall be prescribed in such general law. The Legislature may in any such general law reduce but shall not increase any item of compensation or expense allowance established in such resolution. All voting on the floor of both houses on the question of passage of any such general law shall be by yeas and nays to be entered on the journals
The citizens legislative compensation commission is hereby created continued. It shall be composed of seven members who have been residents of this state for at least ten years prior to the date of appointment, to be appointed by the governor, within twenty days after ratification of this amendment, no more than four of whom shall be members of the same political party. The members shall be broadly representative of the public at large. Members of the Legislature and officers and employees of the state or of any county, municipality or other governmental unit of the state shall are not be eligible for appointment to or to serve as members of the commission. Each member of the commission shall serve for a term of seven years. , except of the members first appointed, one member shall be appointed for a term of one year, and one each for terms ending two, three, four, five, six and seven years after the date of appointment. As the term of each member first appointed expires, a successor shall be appointed for a seven-year term. Any member may be reappointed for any number of terms and any vacancy shall be filled by the governor for the unexpired term. Any member of the commission may be removed by the governor prior to the expiration of such the member's term for official misconduct, incompetency or neglect of duty. The governor shall designate one member of the commission as chairman chairperson. The members of the commission shall serve without compensation but shall be are entitled to be reimbursed for all reasonable and necessary expenses actually incurred in the performance of their duties as such members.
The commission shall may meet as often as may be is determined necessary by the chairperson and shall within fifteen days after the beginning of the regular session of the Legislature in the year one thousand nine hundred seventy-one and within fifteen days after the beginning of the regular session in each fourth year thereafter submit by resolution to the Legislature its determination of compensation and expense allowances, which resolution must be concurred in by at least four members of the commission meet on the second Tuesday of January in the year two thousand six and on the second Tuesday of January every fourth year after that. Within ten days of determining any increase in the compensation, increase in allowances for travel and other expenses or additional days for which members of the Legislature shall be compensated, the commission shall file the determination with the office of the secretary of state and shall forward copies to the governor, the speaker of the House of Delegates and the president of the Senate. The commission may provide for an increase in the compensation or allowance for expenses of members of the Legislature to become effective annually over a period of not more than four consecutive years.
Notwithstanding any other provision of this constitution, such compensation and expense allowances as may be provided for by any such general law the Commission shall be paid on and after the effective date of such general law the increased compensation, increased allowance for expenses or increased days for which members of the Legislature are to be compensated become effective on the first day of the month following the month in which the determination of increase is filed with the secretary of state: Provided, That increases to be made over a period of years become effective on the dates authorized in the determination filed with the office of the secretary of state. Until the first such general law determination becomes effective, the provisions of this section in effect immediately prior to the ratification of this amendment shall continue to govern.
Resolved further, That in accordance with the provisions of article eleven, chapter three of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, such proposed amendment is hereby numbered "Amendment No. 1" and designated as the "Legislative Compensation Reform Amendment" and the purpose of the proposed amendment is summarized as follows: "The purpose of this amendment is to provide that the Citizens Legislative Compensation Commission determines increases in pay and allowances for travel and other expenses and any additional days' compensation will be paid for members of the Legislature and removes authority of the Legislature to vote to increase or decrease the compensation and allowance for expenses of the members."