Member's Press Release

Release Date: 03/12/2016
Contact: Jacque Bland at (304) 590-4678

President Cole

Senate President Bill Cole Touts Accomplishments of Legislative Session

CHARLESTON – The West Virginia Senate completed its regular 60-day session at midnight. During the 60-day session, the Senate passed 223 Senate bills, 150 House bills, and sent 276 bills to the governor.

“This has been one of the most challenging Legislative sessions in recent history,” Senate President Bill Cole, R-Mercer, said. “West Virginia faces one of its toughest periods with our state in a severe fiscal crisis and a workforce participation rate that’s below 50 percent. It took a lot of bold decisions to put our state on the track of prosperity and growth. I’m eager to see that benefits of those decisions in the coming years.”

The Legislature enacted several bills to move West Virginia forward:

• Passed the West Virginia Workplace Freedom Act, which would eliminate the requirement of an employee to be a member of a labor organization as a condition of employment;

• Eliminated the prevailing wage rage on public construction projects. That's a move that’s expected to save West Virginia taxpayers money;

• Passed a comprehensive regulatory reform package to remove outdated or obsolete rules from the West Virginia State Register;

• Passed a measure to drug test and screen recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families that provides drug abuse treatment for those in need;

• Passed several new legal reform measures in an effort to make West Virginia more business friendly, That includes preventing plaintiffs from recovering damages for injuries that occur as a result of their wrongful conduct

“We pushed hard during the regular session, and worked countless hours to get the legislation passed that we did,” Senate President Cole said. “We’ll buckle down and work to get our state’s budget finalized in extended session next week. I know through cooperation and bipartisan effort, we will come to an agreement and produce a solid budget that protects taxpayers and meets our obligations.”

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