(a) A consolidated local government has, but is not limited to, all powers and privileges of a municipality for municipal consolidation, a county for county consolidation and both a municipality and a county for metro consolidation under the Constitution and general laws of West Virginia: Provided, That in a metro consolidation, the governing body of the principal city shall have only the taxing authority granted to a municipality and the governing body of the affected county shall have only the taxing authority granted to a county.
(b) These powers may include the authority to:
(1) Levy and collect taxes on all property taxable for state purposes within the territory of the consolidated local government not exempt by law from taxation and at a rate not in excess of that allowed by law;
(2) License, tax, charge fees and regulate privileges, occupations, trades and professions as authorized by law;
(3) Make appropriations for the support of the consolidated local government and provide for the payment of all debts and expenses of the consolidated local government and the debts and expenses of the local governments of which it is the successor;
(4) Issue or cause to be issued bonds and other debt instruments or enter into all other financial transactions as may be permitted by law;
(5) Purchase, lease, construct, maintain or otherwise acquire, hold, use and operate any property, real, personal or mixed, for any public purpose and sell, lease or otherwise dispose of any property, real, personal or mixed, belonging to a consolidated local government;
(6) Exercise the power of eminent domain for any public purpose subject to the limitations and exceptions prescribed by the Constitution and the general laws of West Virginia;
(7) Accept federal or state funds and other sources of revenue that are applicable to counties and municipalities;
(8) Pass and enforce by fines and penalties, if necessary, all ordinances, not inconsistent with law, as are expedient in maintaining the peace, safety, good government, health and welfare of the residents of the consolidated local government;
(9) Enforce land-use regulations; and
(10) Enter into contracts and agreements with other governmental entities and with private persons, firms and corporations and address cooperative compacts in existence at the time of consolidation.
(c) Consolidated local governments created under this chapter are entitled to all state and federal monetary assistance to the same extent a municipality or county is entitled to such assistance. A metro government has the status of a municipality and county for purposes of receiving state, federal and any other monetary assistance and the population of the territory encompassed by its charter shall be used for all calculations and distributions.
(d) The powers of the consolidated local government shall be construed broadly in its favor. The specific reference, or failure to do so, of particular powers in this section does not limit the general or specific powers of a consolidated local government.
(e) A consolidated local government acquires and succeeds to all rights, obligations, duties and privileges of the governments of which it is a successor in accordance with the terms of the charter.
(f) Without the necessity or formality of deed, bill of sale or other instrument of transfer, the consolidated local government becomes the owner of all property, assets, contracts and franchises within the territory encompassed by the charter previously belonging to the governments of which it is a successor.
(g) The intent of this chapter is to promote consolidation and the provisions of this chapter shall be construed broadly to permit consolidation.
A consolidated local government has the power and jurisdiction specified in its charter and otherwise provided by law.
Rules, ordinances, resolutions and other effects of law in force within an affected municipality, county or metro government at the time of consolidation that do not conflict with the charter remain in effect until superceded by specific action of the new governing body of the consolidated local government.
(a) Public school districts, library districts, fire districts, special taxing districts and public service districts are not affected by consolidation under this chapter.
(b) The adoption of a charter does not alter any right or liability of an affected municipality, county or metro government in effect at the time the charter becomes effective. Ordinances and resolutions relating to public improvements to be paid for, in whole or in part, by special assessments remain in effect until paid in full.