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New Law Reducing Felonies Among Several Taking Effect

Will Price
West Virginia Legislative Photography
The West Virginia Senate.

Dozens of new laws took effect in West Virginia Friday, three months after the end of the state’s regular Legislative session. 

The bills with a July 7 effective date include the West Virginia Second Chance for Employment Act, a bill that allows some nonviolent felonies to petition to have their convictions be reduced to misdemeanors.

The change in law is meant to make it easier for certain felons to get back into the workforce.

Tanning indoors is no longer legal for minors in the state. A new law prohibits the use of tanning beds for anyone under the age of 18—a bill that was presented to lawmakers as a public health issue.

Also among the bills taking effect Friday is one that creates a misdemeanor offense to share sexual images without the consent of the person in the photo.

The bill was brought to lawmakers by a group of students at West Liberty University near Wheeling. 

Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story stated that felonies could be expunged from a person's record under the Second Chance for Employment Act and has been changed to reflect the reduction of felonies to a misdemeanor. 

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