House Committee on Banking and Insurance Advances Annuity Tax Elimination Bill


The House Committee on Banking and Insurance met at 10 a.m. in 215-E on Thursday, Feb. 28, to consider three Senate bills. One of the bills that was advanced from this committee was a bill to eliminate a state tax on annuity collected by life insurers.

Senate Bill 30 is a bill that would eliminate the 1% tax on the annuity that is currently collected by life insurers in the state of West Virginia. A committee amendment adopted at the beginning of the meeting would make the passage of this bill effective in the fiscal year of 2020, so the proposed budget would not have to allocate for the fiscal impact in this year’s budget.

The members of the Banking and Insurance Committee unanimously adopted Senate Bill 30 as amended, citing that the elimination of the annuity tax could greatly benefit West Virginians.

“Most annuitants in the state make a salary of $50,000 or less,” said Minority Chairman John Williams, D-Monongalia. “This is no longer a tax on people making a lot of money, and I think this is going to help a lot of people.”

The House Banking and Insurance Committee unanimously approved of Senate Bill 30 and advanced it to the House Finance Committee for a second reference.

The committee also considered Senate Bill 340. This bill would repeal part of the Insurance Code referring to the WV Physicians Mutual Insurance Company that is no longer needed. The bill would repeal Article 20E in the code, which is deemed obsolete. Article 20E, enacted in and unchanged since 2001, created a mechanism to provide medical professional liability insurance to health care providers who are unable to secure such coverage at approved rates through the voluntary market.

Senate Bill 340 was unanimously approved by the committee and advanced to the House Committee on the Judiciary for a second reference.

The House Committee on Banking and Insurance laid over Senate Bill 74 on this day due to confusing implications. The bill would seek to exempt nonpaid volunteers at state ski resorts from receiving worker’s compensation benefits. The unanswered implication of possible simple negligence suits caused the committee to lay the bill over.