(a) The superintendent shall establish within the West Virginia State Police a cadet selection board which shall be representative of commissioned and noncommissioned officers within the State Police.
(b) The superintendent shall appoint a member to the position of trooper from among the top three names on the current list of eligible applicants established by the cadet selection board.
(c) Preference in making appointments shall be given whenever possible to honorably discharged members of the armed forces of the United States and to residents of West Virginia. Each applicant for appointment shall be a person not less than twenty-one years of age nor more than thirty-nine years of age, of sound constitution and good moral character and is required to pass any mental and physical examination and meet other requirements as provided in rules promulgated by the cadet selection board: Provided, That a former member may, at the discretion of the superintendent, be reenlisted.
(d) No person may be barred from becoming a member of the State Police because of his or her religious or political convictions.
(e) The superintendent shall adhere to the principles of equal employment opportunity set forth in article eleven, chapter five of this code and shall take positive steps to encourage applications for State Police membership from females and minority groups within the state. An annual report shall be filed with the Legislature on or before January 1 of each year by the superintendent which includes a summary of the efforts and the effectiveness of those efforts intended to recruit females, African-Americans and other minorities into the ranks of the State Police.
(f) Except for the superintendent, no person may be appointed or enlisted to membership in the State Police at a grade or rank above the grade of trooper.
(g) The superintendent shall appoint civilian employees as are necessary and all employees may be included in the classified service of the civil service system except those in positions exempt under the provisions of article six, chapter twenty-nine of this code.
(h) Effective July 1, 2001, through June 30, 2014, civilian employees with a minimum of five years' service shall receive a salary increase equal to $100 a year for each year of service as a civilian employee. Every three years thereafter, civilian employees who have five or more years of service shall receive an annual salary increase of $300. The increases in salary provided by this subsection are in addition to any other increases to which the civilian employees might otherwise be entitled. After June 30, 2014, the provisions of this subsection are not operative.
(i) After June 30, 2014, West Virginia State Police civilian employees with a minimum of one year service shall receive an annual longevity salary increase equal to $500. The increases in salary provided by this subsection are in addition to any other increases to which the civilian employees might otherwise be entitled.
(j) Effective July 1, 2014, all current West Virginia State Police Forensic Laboratory analysts, directors and evidence technicians shall receive a one-time, across-the-board salary increase equal to twenty percent of their current salary.
(k) On or before January 1, 2018, the Director of the West Virginia State Police Forensic Laboratory shall submit a report to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance detailing the West Virginia State Police Forensic Laboratory's ability to retain employees.