West Virginia Code


Chapter 21     Entire Code



§21-13-1. Purpose.

The Legislature finds that it is necessary to the safety, health, public interest and general welfare of the people of the State of West Virginia that convenience food stores operating in the state be regulated to prevent the ever-present danger to the safety, health, life and general welfare of its citizens and the employees of these stores.

§21-13-2. Definitions.

As used in this article, except where a different meaning is provided in section five of this article:

(1) "Convenience food store" means a business establishment that:

(A) Derives fifty percent or more of its gross income from the sale of goods, merchandise or other articles of value in their original containers or gasoline and other petroleum products with gross annual sales of $1 million or more; and

(B) Offers a limited quantity and variety of food, household and sundry items; and

(C) Operates at any time between the hours of twelve o'clock a.m. and five o'clock a.m.; and

(D) Does not sell or offer for sale prescription drug items.

(2) "Owner" means the person, corporation, partnership, joint venture or other group enterprise having an ownership or proprietary interest in a convenience food store.

(3) "Employee" means any person permitted to work by a person, corporation, partnership, joint venture or group enterprise legally responsible for the operation of the convenience food store.

§21-13-3. Convenience food store regulations.

All convenience food stores shall comply with the following provisions:

(1) If open for business after twelve o'clock a.m., the convenience food store must employ two persons who are continuously on duty on the premises from twelve o'clock a.m. until closing or five o'clock a.m., whichever occurs first, or employ one person during these hours and install the security camera system provided for in subdivision (3) of this section, or install a security booth for one person to occupy during these hours or lock their doors and allow customers to be served through a pass-through device.

(2) The entire area of the parking area used by customers of convenience food stores must be lighted during all hours of darkness when employees or customers, or both employees and customers are on the premises. Minimum average maintained illuminance must be two footcandles or greater with a uniformity ratio (average to minimum) of no more than five to one unless such lighting violates applicable municipal lighting code requirements or creates a public or private nuisance.

(3) If only one person is employed on duty on the premises from twelve o'clock a.m. until closing or five o'clock a.m., the store shall install, by January 1, 1999, a security camera capable of producing a retrievable image on film or tape that can be enlarged through projection or other means. The cameras shall be maintained in proper working order at all times.

(4) Any owner or employee who works between the hours of twelve o'clock a.m. and five o'clock a.m. at a convenience food store shall be trained in robbery prevention by the owner. Owners shall develop a written robbery prevention program which shall be available for inspection during regular business hours at each convenience food store, and shall base the training on the program.

(5) Provide height markers at the door or doors exiting the premise which display measurements from the floor: Provided, That any owner who is in compliance with this section and certifies such compliance to the Superintendent of State Police or the superintendents designee, or the county sheriff's department or the municipal police department, on or before January 1, 1999, shall be exempt from the provisions of section four of this article.

§21-13-4. Penalties and enforcement.

Any owner who fails to comply with this article, upon the first violation, shall be assessed a civil fine of not less than $100 nor more than $500; and, upon a second violation shall be fined not less than $500 nor more than $1,000. For third and subsequent violations, an owner shall be fined not less than $1,000 nor more than $5,000. If noncompliance is corrected within ten days after a violation, no fine may be assessed.



Acts, 2002 Reg. Sess., Ch. 104.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2017 Regular Session
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