House Passes Budget Bill, Adjourns Sine Die

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The House convened at 10 a.m. to conclude the 2020 legislative session.

The House concurred with the Senate amendments to Senate Bill 150, the Budget Bill, and completed legislation on it. The Budget Bill allocates $108 million to fully eliminate the waitlist for the I/DD Waiver. This was a priority for this session by both bodies of the legislature and Governor Jim Justice. The budget allocates $16.8 million for the foster care system within the state under House Bill 4092. The budget also provides $3.3 million to fund a second location for the Mountaineer ChalleNGe Academy, which is a program that trains and mentors at-risk youths from the ages of 16-18 in a 22-week program.

The House concurred with the Senate amendment and provided an additional amendment to House Bill 4092. House Bill 4092 provides major structural change to the state’s struggling foster care system and seeks to address many issues. One of the most important parts of the bill is a per diem rate increase for foster and kinship families. This bill has been the House’s main priority during this legislative session and has faced major bipartisan support, so many members spoke to the bill before voting on the amendment.

Delegate Mike Pushkin, D- Kanawha, supported the bill during the floor session. “This is the most important piece of legislation we’ve worked on this session,” he said. “If we can’t stand up for these children, then what good is this legislature?”

Delegate Jordan Hill, R- Nicholas, is the lead sponsor of this bill and the Chairman of the Health and Human Resources Committee. “In my time in this House, there has been no greater honor than sponsoring this bill,” he said.

The House concurred with the amendments for House Bill 4543, which set a price cap on a thirty-day supply of insulin. The House originally had set the cap at $25, but the Senate amendment changed the cap to $100.

The House concurred with the Senate amendments and completed legislation for sixty-one House Bills. The House concurred with the Senate amendments and completed legislation for thirteen Senate Bills.

The House is adjourned Sine Die.