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Introduced Version Senate Bill 685 History

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Key: Green = existing Code. Red = new code to be enacted
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Senate Bill No. 685

(By Senators McCabe, Helmick, Plymale, Bailey, Prezioso, Love, Edgell, Unger, Boley, Facemyer, Guills, Sypolt, Minard, McKenzie, Stollings, Yoder, Jenkins and White)

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[Introduced February 18, 2008; referred to the Committee on the Judiciary; and then to the Committee on Finance.]

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A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated §12-3-21, relating to reaffirming the constitutional authority of the Legislature to appropriate public moneys; providing procedures for the disposition and appropriation of moneys received from certain actions; requiring reports to the President of the Senate, Speaker of the House of Delegates, Governor and Secretary of Administration of expenses incurred in such actions; and requiring notice to the President of the Senate, Speaker of the House of Delegates, Governor and Secretary of Administration upon commencement of such actions.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended by adding thereto a new section, designated §12-3-21, to read as follows:
ARTICLE 3. APPROPRIATIONS, EXPENDITURES AND DEDUCTIONS.
§12-3-21. Appropriation of moneys received from certain actions; reports of expenses incurred.

(a) The Legislature reaffirms its exclusive authority under the Constitution to appropriate public moneys, and hereby establishes procedures for the disposition and appropriation of moneys received as a result of actions.
(b) In any action brought on behalf of the State of West Virginia, or any of its departments, agencies, institutions, officers, employees, or political subdivisions which results in settlement or judgment, the net proceeds of moneys, fines, restitution, forfeitures, penalties, costs, interest or judgments collected pursuant to any civil litigation, administrative proceeding or in settlement of any claim, shall be deposited in the General Revenue Fund of the state and shall be available for expenditure only upon appropriation by the Legislature in accordance with the provisions of West Virginia Constitution, article six, section fifty-one, unless:
(1) The recovery or a portion thereof was on behalf of a special fund established under the provisions of this code, in which event the portion of the recovery on behalf of the special fund shall be deposited in the special fund established in the State Treasury; or
(2) The recovery or a portion thereof was on behalf of or required to be held in a trust fund, in which event the portion of the recovery on behalf of the trust fund shall be deposited in a special fund established in the State Treasury to be held in trust; or
(3) The recovery was on behalf of a political subdivision of the state, in which event the portion of the recovery on behalf of the political subdivision shall be transmitted to the treasurer of the political subdivision for deposit in its general fund.
(c) In order for the Legislature to knowingly and properly assert its Constitutional responsibility and obligation to appropriate, in any action set forth in this section which involved expenditures of time or resources by agencies or persons other than regular employees of the State of West Virginia or any of its departments, agencies, institutions or political subdivisions, the attorney effectuating a final settlement or judgment shall immediately upon conclusion of the action, certify the following information to the Governor, the Secretary of the Department of Administration, the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Delegates:
(1) The names of all persons who provided extraordinary services with respect to the action, including attorneys, experts, accountants and similar professionals, with an accounting of the terms on which they are to be paid, including the amount of time and other resources expended on the action; and
(2) The names, resources and amount of time expended by similar professionals employed or engaged by any of the parties; and
(3) Notwithstanding any provision of this subsection to the contrary, or any other provision of law, the proceeds of judgments or settlements of any kind, or any part thereof, may not be expended without appropriation by the Legislature.
(d) So that the Legislature may be aware of potential awards, the attorney bringing any action on behalf of the State of West Virginia, or any of its departments, agencies, institutions, officers, employees or political subdivisions which could result in settlement or judgment shall immediately upon commencement of the action notify the Governor, the Secretary of the Department of Administration, the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Delegates.

NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to reaffirm the Constitutional authority of the Legislature to appropriate public moneys; to establish procedures for appropriation of moneys received in certain actions; and to require reporting expenses in these actions in order to provide the Legislature with information necessary for it to properly exert its authority to appropriate.

This section is new; therefore, strike-throughs and underscoring have been omitted.
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