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Courthouse Closures

The Chief Judge of a circuit has the authority to order an emergency closure of the courts in that circuit, including circuit courts, magistrate courts, circuit clerk’s offices, magistrate clerk’s offices, family courts, and probation offices. Any time off for court staff is not considered annual or sick leave. Magistrates are on a holiday/weekend schedule during the closure.

In some counties, although the courts are closed, other areas of the courthouses may remain open. In other counties, both courts and entire courthouses are closed. For information on county offices not covered by the judicial orders (which cover only the judicial offices listed above), contact that county commission.

Full Open/Closed Listing

CCAWV’s Board of Directors gathered at Wheeling Island Casino in Ohio County on June 22nd and 23rd for their annual spring board meeting. Canvassing requirements had forced the board to meet later than usual, but it was a very productive meeting. Board members and members of the legislative committee reviewed the 2014 Legislative Session,  which, barring the “salary saga”, was a relatively quiet one for Commissioners.

The contest is open to all 8th grade students who are enrolled in a West Virginia public or private school.
•    The contest deadline is 5 p.m. on April 30, 2013 (see No. 8).
•    Each essay is limited to a maximum of 500 words and a minimum of 400 words and must address the following question: “How does my county government make life better for me?” The essay must address specifically the county government of the county in which the student resides.
•    Each student is limited to one entry. 
•    Each teacher must completely fill out an official application form (attached). Please submit each entry individually as a Word or PDF document with a copy of the application form attached.
•    All entries must contain the student’s name, email address, and the county name in which the essay is about.
•    All entries must be submitted in Microsoft Word or PDF format and must be submitted by the student’s teacher.
•    All entries must be emailed to Vivian@ccawv.org prior to 5 p.m. on April 30, 2013.
•    The winning essay will be announced by May 24, 2013.
•    The 1st place student will receive $300, and the teacher who submitted the 1st place essay will receive $300 to be used for classroom activities
•    The 2nd place student will receive $250 and the 3rd place student will receive $150.
•    The winning students and his/her teachers will be invited to a County Commissioners meeting in their home county to receive their awards.
•    The 1st place winning essay will be published in Commissioners’ Corner, CCAWV’s official publication, and posted on the CCAWV website, (www.ccawv.org).
•    Essays will be judged on the following criteria: understanding of the role of county government; grammar and spelling; clarity and organization of thought.
•    By entering the contest, each student and teacher agrees to allow his/her name to be used in a news release announcing the contest winner in the event that their essay is selected as a winning essay. In addition, they agree to allow their photograph to be published in the Commissioners’ Corner and on the CCAWV Web site.
•    Entries will not be returned.

Please down the form here.

By Vivian Parsons, Executive Director

Only 2 more days to go in the regular session (the governor has extended the session by 3 days to work on the state budget bill).  All bills still in committee at this time have little chance for survival, as bills are to be read on the floor 3 separate days.  Rules can, however, be suspended by the body if the votes are there, but we haven't seen much of that this session.   As always, call me if you have questions, 304-415-1608.

First a quick update on some bills of special importance we've been following:

HJR 113 - "County Option Homestead Exemption Bill" - Likely dead, has a double reference in Senate and has not moved.

SB 487 - expanding definitions of county economic development authority so counties can receive the monies in the Coalbed Methane Gas Distribution Fund   - This bill has passed out of House Finance and is on 1st reading today!

SB 526 - permissive authority for county commission to impose additional transfer tax for dedication to regional jails and drug treatment. - This bill is most likely dead, still sitting in House Finance.

SB 167 - allowing county to accept credit card payments.  - This bill is likely dead, still sitting in House Judiciary.

SB 437 - Governor's Substance Abuse bill  - This bill is on 1st reading on the House Floor.

SB 468 - Allowing Courthouse Facilities Improvement Authority to issue bonds - This bill is likely dead, still sitting in House Finance.

HB 4547 - Creating the West Virginia Innovation Free-Trade Business Technology Property Valuation Act and the West Virginia Innovation Free-Trade Tax Credit Act - Allows for the use of (5% ) salvage value tax credits  - Likely Dead, still in Senate Economic Development.

HB 4030 prioritizes payments of fees from court costs which could cost counties revenues   - The Senate Judiciary Committee has passed this bill, but it has a 2nd reference to Senate Finance, which makes passage less likely.

Here are all the bills of county interest we've been following since cross-over day...(remember you can click on the bill number and go to the text of the bill and bill history)

CCAWV’s Board of Directors gathered at Wheeling Island Casino in Ohio County on June 22nd and 23rd for their annual spring board meeting. Canvassing requirements had forced the board to meet later than usual, but it was a very productive meeting. Board members and members of the legislative committee reviewed the 2014 Legislative Session,  which, barring the “salary saga”, was a relatively quiet one for Commissioners.

Sunday, August 3rd, Commissioners from across West Virginia will gather at Huntington’s Pullman Plaza for their Annual Meeting and training series by the WV State Auditor’s Office. We plan to have a full training agenda as well as some fun opportunities to meet and mingle with commissioners from all corners of the state. The meeting is just a month away!

CCAWV has partnered with Dave Barton of Shenandoah Valley Group to roll out a new, free benefit to members: an email series dedicated to a variety of HR topics.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) and its attendant requirements have complicated the world of HR administration substantially. Do you or the person responsible for your county’s HR administration know if your county is an ALE (applicable large employer)? Does the insurance coverage you are offering qualify as MEC (minimum essential coverage)> Are you familiar with the four approaches to determine MV (minimum value) of coverage? Are you confused yet?

Registration now open for Annual Meeting

 

On Thursday, May 15th, the Regional Jail Authority hosted its first “Cost Containment Committee” meeting at the South Western Regional Jail. This will be the first in a series of meetings designed to engage local government officials in an ongoing dialogue with the Regional Jail Authority. All parties have a vested interest in keeping jail costs down.  This will provide an excellent forum to talk openly about what is working, what isn’t working, and why.

May was a busy month for West Virginia politicians! The WV legislature convened for another Special Session on the heels of the West Virginia Primary, which took place May 13, 2014. During the Special Session, the legislature took up the budget cuts Governor Tomblin had made with his line item veto. In all, they restored over 1 million in funding. The money, which will come from excess lottery funds, will go towards programs that support West Virginia’s children and families, such as Family Resource Network and Child Advocacy Centers.

This year, two commissions used the CCAWV essay contest as an opportunity to get out and interact with their communities. Commissioners took time to speak with the students and explain their role in county government. Everyone benefitted from the exchange – students had a unique learning opportunity, and commissioners got to give back to their communities. Below, we’ve highlighted two outstanding examples of commissioners in action.

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