Introduced Version House Bill 4589 History

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WEST virginia legislature

2020 regular session


House Bill 4589

By Delegates Pushkin, D. Jeffries, Jennings, Robinson, Butler, Estep-Burton, Pyles, Bartlett and D. Kelly

[Introduced January 29, 2020; Referred to the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs and Homeland Security then Government Organization.]


A BILL to amend and reenact §29-1-3 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to causing a study and recommendations by the Commission on the Arts on the construction and design of a memorial to honor West Virginians killed in the United States War on Terror.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:


§29-1-3. Commission on the arts.

(a) The commission on the arts is continued and shall be composed of 15 appointed voting members and the ex officio nonvoting members set forth or authorized for appointment in this section.

(b)(1) The Governor shall appoint, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, the voting members of the commission for staggered terms of three years. A person appointed to fill a vacancy shall be appointed only for the remainder of that term.

(2) No more than eight voting members may be of the same political party. Effective July 1, 2004, no more than three voting members may be from the same regional educational service agency district created in §18-2-26 of this code. Voting members of the commission shall be appointed so as to fairly represent both sexes, the ethnic and cultural diversity of the state and the geographic regions of the state.

(3) The commission shall elect one of its members as chair. It shall meet at the times specified by the chair. Notice of each meeting shall be given to each member by the chair in compliance with the open meetings laws of the state. A majority of the voting members constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. The director of the arts section shall be an ex officio nonvoting member of the commission and shall serve as secretary. The director or a majority of the members also may call a meeting upon notice as provided in this section.

(4) Each voting member or ex officio nonvoting member of the commission shall serve without compensation, but shall be reimbursed for all reasonable and necessary expenses actually incurred in the performance of the duties of the office; except that in the event the expenses are paid, or are to be paid, by a third party, the member or ex officio member, as the case may be, shall not be reimbursed by the state.

(5) Upon recommendation of the commissioner, the Governor also may appoint those officers of the state that are appropriate to serve on the commission as ex officio nonvoting members.

(c) The commission may:

(1) Advise the commissioner and the director of the arts section concerning the accomplishment of the purposes of that section and establish a state plan with respect to the arts section;

(2) Approve and distribute grants-in-aid and awards from federal and state funds relating to the purposes of the arts section;

(3) Request, accept or expend federal funds to accomplish the purposes of the arts section when federal law or regulations would prohibit those actions by the commissioner or section director, but would permit them to be done by the commission on the arts;

(4) Otherwise encourage and promote the purposes of the arts section;

(5) Approve rules concerning the professional policies and functions of the section as promulgated by the director of the arts section; and

(6) Advise and consent to the appointment of the director by the commissioner.

(d) A special revenue account in the State Treasury, known as the “cultural facilities and capital resources matching grant program fund”, is continued. The fund shall consist of moneys received under §29-22A-10 of this code and funds from any other source. The moneys in the fund shall be expended in accordance with the following:

(1) 50 percent of the moneys deposited in the fund shall be expended by the commission on the arts for capital improvements, preservation and operations of cultural facilities: Provided, That the commission on the arts may use no more than 25 percent of the funding for operations of cultural facilities pursuant to the rule required by this subdivision: Provided, however, That the commission shall make a women’s veterans memorial statue a priority when expending the funds: Provided further, That the commission shall submit the plans for the statue to the secretary of administration for his or her approval. The commission on the arts shall propose rules for legislative approval in accordance with the provisions of §29A-3-1 et seq. of this code to create a matching grant program for cultural facilities and capital resources; and

(2) 50 percent of the moneys deposited in the fund shall be expended by the Division of Culture and History for:

(A) Capital improvements, preservation and operation of cultural facilities that are managed by the division; and

(B) Capital improvements, preservation and operation of cultural facilities that are not managed by the division.

(e) The commission shall undertake a study, solicit designs and make recommendations for the establishment of an appropriate memorial on Capitol grounds for soldiers killed in the conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan and other locations who died fighting the United States War on Terror, to recognize and properly honor the West Virginians who lost their lives in these conflicts. The commission shall consult with the Capitol Building Commission, state veterans, including veterans groups and Gold Star mothers of those lost in these conflicts, prior to adoption of a proposal for the memorial. A report shall be made by the commission to the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Government and Finance by January 1, 2022, which shall include at a minimum, recommendations for a design and location of the memorial, along with an estimate for costs of its construction.


NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to direct the Commission on the Arts to oversee a study for an appropriate memorial for West Virginians killed in the War on Terror, including but not limited to those killed in Iraq and Afghanistan, and directing the Commission to consult with veterans groups, Gold Star mothers and the Capitol Building Commission on an appropriate design of the memorial.

Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from a heading or the present law and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.

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