Member's Press Release

Release Date: 01/29/2016
Contact: Jacque Bland at (304) 590-4678

President Cole

This Week in the West Virginia Senate

CHARLESTON – The West Virginia Senate swore in its newest member on Monday when Republican Sue Cline of Wyoming County took the oath of office to fill the vacant Ninth District seat.

“I am proud to welcome Sue Cline to the Senate," Senate President Bill Cole said. "Sue's outstanding reputation for hard work and community service is widely known throughout Wyoming County, and I am eager to have her strength and leadership as part of our body. Her tireless dedication to her community has made her a perfect choice to serve the residents of the Ninth District as their Senator."

Cline becomes the second woman to currently serve in the Senate, along with Senator Donna Boley, R-Pleasants.


The West Virginia Senate passed 18 bills this week and advanced several others through committee.

Passed: Senate Bill 13 – Increasing penalties for overtaking and passing stopped school buses

  • Passed January 26, 2016, by a vote of 33-1
  • Sponsors: Majority Leader Carmichael (R-Jackson), Boso (R-Nicholas), Gaunch (R-Kanawha), Leonhardt (R-Monongalia), Trump (R-Morgan), Walters (R-Putnam), Blair (R-Morgan), Takubo (R-Kanawha), Miller (D-Greenbrier), Unger (D-Berkeley)
  • Adds section to state code that would (if a vehicle’s license plate number is known) allow law enforcement to infer the person driving the vehicle who passes the stopped school bus is the owner or lessee of the car. The owner would then be charged with the crime. Previously, law enforcement had to witness vehicles run the stop signs.
  • Penalties for passing stopped school buses do not change under the new law.
  • Pending in the House Judiciary Committee

    Passed: Senate Bill 146 – Establishing instruction standards for early childhood education

  • Passed January 29, 2016, by a vote of 33-0 (one member absent)
  • Sponsors: Plymale (D-Wayne), Unger
  • Replaces five-day requirement of pre-Kindergarten programs with a mandate for 1,500 instructional minutes, giving flexibility to counties to decide how to allot the time.
  • Pending introduction in the House of Delegates

    Passed: Senate Bill 14 – Limiting successor corporation asbestos-related liabilities

  • Passed January 29, 2016, by a vote of 33-0 (one member absent)
  • Sponsors: Trump, Boso, Ferns (R-Ohio), Leonhardt, Takubo, Blair
  • More than 20 other states have passed legislation similar to this bill to limit asbestos-related liabilities for companies that have never manufactured, sold, or distributed asbestos or asbestos-related products, but were liable as “successor corporations.”

    Legislation to Watch

    Senate Bill 12 – Relating to the Local County Powers Act

  • Sponsors: Leonhardt
  • Provides for the fair distribution of costs for county development by authorizing the assessment and collection of fees to offset the cost of commercial, industrial and residential development.
  • Pending before Senate Finance Committee Coming up for a vote in the Senate next week

    Senate Bill 27 – Permitting county commissioners hire outside attorneys for collection of taxes through courts

  • Sponsors: Kirkendoll (D-Logan), Miller, Gaunch

    Senate Bill 15 – Adopting learned intermediary doctrine as defense to civil action due to inadequate warnings or instructions

  • Sponsors: Boso, Gaunch

    All Releases

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