Friday, March 1, 2024
Friday, March 1, 2024

House Judiciary Advances Seven Bills Today

The Judiciary Committee met this afternoon to consider the following:

House Bill 4320 states no parent or guardian may be denied access to a minor’s health records unless ordered otherwise by the court. After some discussion, the bill was laid over for another meeting.

House Bill 4851 authorizes local school boards, public charter schools, and private/religious schools to employ school security officers. SSOs must be retired law-enforcement officers in good standing. The individuals must complete training and certification courses. The bill does not suggest replacing student resource officers. SSOs would be in addition to SROs if the county wants them. An amendment was offered and was rejected. Two other amendments were adopted. The bill advances to the floor.

House Bill 5065 increases compensation rates for guardian ad litem to $105 for out-of-court work and to $125 for in-court work. Guardians ad litem must complete continuing education requirements. The committee substitute advances to the Finance Committee.

House Bill 5084 requires a valid identification card to be presented to verify the age for the purchase or acceptance of vapes and vape products. The bill advances to the floor.

House Bill 5091 increases the fine for individuals who damage critical infrastructure over $2,500 to $25,000 to $100,000. For each offense after this, the fine would be $100,000 to $500,000 and the individual could be imprisoned for five to ten years. The bill was amended and advanced to the House floor.

House Bill 5122 removes the upper age limit for the original appointment of a deputy sheriff. House Bill 5133 removes the upper age limit for the original appointment of municipal police officers. The committee wrapped the two bills into a committee substitute for House Bill 5122.

House Bill 5332 exempts persons who have previously been commissioned as a notary public from the requirement of having a high school diploma or its equivalent.

House Joint Resolution 21 is a proposed amendment to section 1 of Article IV of the WV Constitution to clarify individuals who are not U.S. citizens cannot vote in any election of the state. The bill advances to the House.

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