WEST virginia legislature
2021 regular session
House Bill 2916
By Delegates Rowan, Rowe, Steele, Foster, Burkhammer, Espinosa, Linville, Hardy, Young, Skaff and Hornbuckle
[Originating in the Committee on Government Organization, March 8, 2021]
A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new article, designated §4-13A-1, §4-13A-2, §4-13A-3, §4-13A-4, §4-13A-5, §4-13A-6, and §4-13A-7, relating to the creation of the West Virginia Semiquincentennial Commission and Fund to support the celebration of the 250th anniversary of our nation’s founding; providing for the method and manner by which the commission shall be appointed; providing for expense reimbursement for the commission’s members; establishing the powers and duties of the commission; and providing a sunset provision for the commission.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
ARTICLE 13A. WEST VIRGINIA Semiquincentennial COMMISSION AND FUND.
§4-13A-1. Findings; West Virginia Semiquincentennial Commission established; purpose.
(a) The Legislature finds that the 250th anniversary of our nation’s founding is of such historical significance as to warrant its commemoration.
(b) There is hereby created the West Virginia Semiquincentennial Commission.
(c) The purpose of the commission is to prepare for and commemorate the semiquincentennial of our nation’s founding.
§4-13A-2. Membership; terms; filling vacancies; election of chair and vice chair.
(a) The Governor shall appoint 10 members as follows:
(1) Three academic historians;
(2) Five citizens members, no more than one of whom may be from any one state senatorial district;
(3) A member of the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution;
(4) A member of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution;
(b) The following shall serve as ex-officio voting members;
(5) The State Superintendent of Schools, or a designee;
(6) The Cabinet Secretary of Commerce, or a designee;
(7) The Curator of the Department of Arts, Culture, and History, or a designee;
(8) The Commissioner of the Division of Tourism, or a designee;
(9) The Executive Director of the Herbert Henderson Minority Affairs Office, or a designee;
(10) The West Virginia State Archivist;
(11) The Director of the West Virginia State Museums;
(12) One member of the House of Delegates, to be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Delegates, who shall serve as an ex officio nonvoting member of the commission; and
(13) One member of the State Senate, to be appointed by the President of the Senate, who shall serve as an ex officio nonvoting member of the commission;
(14) Members of the United States Senate from the State of West Virginia, or their designees shall serve as ex officio nonvoting members of the commission;
(15) Members of the United States House of Representatives from the State of West Virginia, or their designees shall serve as ex officio nonvoting members of the commission;
(c) All appointed members shall serve at the will and pleasure of the Governor;
(d) Appointments to fill vacancies shall be for the unexpired terms. Vacancies shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointments.
(e) The curator of the West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History shall serve as the chair of the commission. The commission shall elect a vice chair and secretary from among its members.
§4-13A-3. Expense reimbursement.
(a) Members shall serve without compensation.
(b) The commission may reimburse members for all reasonable and necessary expenses actually incurred in the performance of his or her duties as a commission member, in a manner consistent with the guidelines of the travel management office of the Department of Administration, subject to availability of funds received pursuant to subdivision (1), subsection (a), section six of this article. No provision of this section may be construed to require any appropriation of funds by the Legislature.
§4-13A-4. Quorum; meetings.
(a) A simple majority of the members serving on the board at a given time constitutes a quorum for the transaction of business.
(b) Meetings shall be held in accordance with the provisions of §6-9A-1 et seq., of this code.
§4-13A-5. Advisory council.
The commission may establish an advisory council composed of citizens at large who have knowledge of American history and interest in its semiquincentennial celebration to assist the commission in its work.
§4-13A-6. Powers; duties; limitation on duration of contracts.
(a) The commission may:
(1) Solicit, accept, use and dispose of gifts, grants, donations, bequests or other funds or real or personal property for the purpose of aiding or facilitating the work of the commission, upon compliance with the provisions of §12-2-2 of this code;
(2) Procure supplies, services and property and make or enter into contracts, leases, or other legal agreement as necessary to carry out its duties: Provided, That no contract, lease or other legal agreement may be entered into by the commission with terms which would extend beyond the termination date of the commission;
(3) Plan, develop and carry out programs and activities appropriate to commemorate the semiquincentennial of the founding of our nation;
(4) Encourage civic, historical, educational, economic, and other organizations throughout West Virginia to organize and participate in activities to expand the understanding and appreciation of the United States of America;
(5) Provide technical assistance to localities and nonprofit organizations to further the commemoration of the semiquincentennial of the founding of our nation;
(6) Develop programs and facilities to ensure that the semiquincentennial commemoration of the founding of our nation results in a positive legacy and long-term public benefit; and
(7) Encourage the development and conduct of programs designed to involve all citizens in activities that commemorate the semiquincentennial of the founding of our nation.
(b) The commission shall report to the Legislature at each regular session and at the same time report to the Governor concerning the action taken by the commission during the previous year in carrying out the provisions of this article and make such special reports as may be required by the Legislature and Governor.
§4-13A-7. Termination of the commission.
The commission shall terminate on June 30, 2027.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to create the Semiquincentennial Commission for the celebration of the 250th anniversary of the founding of the United States of America.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from a heading or the present law and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.