The Legislature Today

M-F at 6 p.m. on TV, Radio & Digital. Re-airs at 7 p.m. on The WV Channel

The Legislature Today is West Virginia's source for daily legislative news and information.  The only live television program covering the West Virginia Legislature, the broadcast features reports from the Senate, House and committee meetings with in-depth interviews and analysis of the legislative process in West Virginia.

The Legislature Today airs weeknights at these times and locations:

The Legislature Today can also be heard at 6 p.m. weeknights on WVPB's statewide radio network.

 

Subscribe to The Legislature Today Podcast for daily downloads of the program.

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Marshall University | West Virginia University

Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia Senate’s Finance Committee unveiled Monday a complicated and sweeping set of tax reforms. The proposed refiguration of the state’s tax code is somewhat of a game of musical chairs — with a few significant hurdles to overcome. 

Lawmakers in the GOP-led Senate are continuing their push to roll back the manufacturing machinery, equipment and inventory tax  but, with a committee originating bill, they’re also tacking on a proposal that would eliminate taxes on retail inventory and automobiles. 

We’ve passed the deadline for bills to be introduced in the House of Delegates this session. On Monday, that same cut-off will be in the Senate. Host Suzanne Higgins sits down with statehouse reporters Ryan Quinn of The Charleston Gazette-Mail, Taylor Stuck of the Huntington Herald-Dispatch, and Brad McElhinny of WV MetroNews for this week’s roundtable.

solar panels atop the garage attached to the First State Capitol Building
Glynis Board / WVPB

Lawmakers in the West Virginia Senate have passed a bill that would markedly increase solar generation in the coal-heavy Mountain State. 

We look at two bills aimed at protecting health insurance coverage for pre-existing conditions – one offered by West Virginia Senate Republicans, and one offered by Senate Democrats.

Natural gas pipe for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline sits in a yard Feb. 27, 2019, near Morgantown, W.Va.
Larry Dowling / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Three days after a public hearing on the implications of a bill to protect critical infrastructure sites in West Virginia, the House of Delegates has passed House Bill 4615, which will create “a criminal offense of trespass upon property containing a critical infrastructure facility.” 

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

A Republican delegate this week accused another delegate from the same party of being aggressive with other lawmakers while intoxicated. 

We explore support and opposition to a bill that would cut funding for greyhound racing at two West Virginia tracks, and we bring you the latest in West Virginia Legislative news.

West Virginia Legislative Photography

West Virginia educators would have to teach students about suicide prevention under a bill passed Wednesday by the state Senate.

Lawmakers voted 33-0 to approve the bill, which would require that teachers, students and other school officials get training on suicide prevention and awareness.

We bring you a special report and discussion on the challenges faced by West Virginia’s farmers. We also bring you the latest news from the Capitol.

Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia Senate passed a bill Tuesday that would allow private and homeschool students to play public school sports and participate in other extracurricular activities. Senate Bill 131, known as the Tim Tebow Act, is named after the Heisman trophy winner and professional athlete who fought as a homeschooler for the right to play public school sports.

We learn about a state program that’s helping thousands of West Virginia grandparents who are raising their grandchildren, and we have a conversation with the co-chairs of a new bipartisan Tech Caucus.

Flickr / davidwilson1949

After acknowledging that murder is already a crime, the West Virginia Senate on Monday passed a bill to penalize physicians who don't provide medical care to a baby born after an abortion attempt.

heliopix / Adobe stock

West Virginia's Senate approved a bill Monday to create a new intermediate court system.

The bill that passed on an 18-14 vote now goes to the House of Delegates. The Legislature has made numerous attempts in past sessions to approve similar legislation without success.

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Those protesting pipelines and other industrial sites could be subject to fines and imprisonment under a new bill being considered in the West Virginia House of Delegates. The lower chamber’s Judiciary Committee held a public hearing Monday on a measure known as the West Virginia Critical Infrastructure Protection Act.

House Bill 4615 would designate and protect facilities the measure deems “critical infrastructure facilities” — including oil refineries, natural gas operations, telecommunications infrastructure, railroads, chemical plants, government-regulated dams and water treatment facilities. The measure would impose various jail sentences and fines for trespassing, vandalism and “conspiring” with those who carry out those acts. 

It’s Friday, and that means we look back at a week of West Virginia Legislative action. We’ve also officially reached the half-way mark of the 2020 session. Host Suzanne Higgins is joined by statehouse reporters Phil Kabler of The Charleston Gazette-Mail, Emily Allen of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, and Steven Allen Adams of Ogden Newspapers.

West Virginia Legislative Photography

A bill to create an intermediate court of appeals in West Virginia is on its way to a final vote in the state Senate. Lawmakers rejected an amendment Friday that would have required the proposed court to handle criminal cases in addition to civil cases.

Senate Bill 275 would create another layer of appeals between circuit courts and the state Supreme Court. Two three-judge panels — split between a northern and southern district — would hear civil cases, guardianship cases and workers’ compensation cases, as well as appeals to decisions in family court.

We discuss West Virginia’s children in crisis with members of a newly formed Public Health caucus. Also, West Virginia’s veterans were honored at the Capitol, and we bring you the latest in legislative action.

Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia Senate’s Select Committee on Children and Families has advanced a bill that would create a string of reforms for employees of the Department of Health and Human Resources’ Bureau for Children and Families. Senate Bill 312 would focus on pay, create a registration system for caseworkers and hopes to address issues of vacancies and turnover that have plagued the bureau.

Brittany Patterson / Ohio Valley Resource

The West Virginia House of Delegates has yet again passed a bill seeking to plug some of the thousands of abandoned oil and natural gas wells that go unreclaimed every year, endangering the environment.

On The Legislature Today, we explore the growing responsibilities of West Virginia’s Emergency Medical Services. Host Suzanne Higgins speaks with two members of West Virginia’s EMS Advisory Council.

Sen. Mike Romano, D-Harrison, speaks against Senate Joint Resolution 7 on Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2020.
Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

More than a year after a temporary bench of the West Virginia Supreme Court derailed the 2018 impeachment trials of justices of the state’s high court, Republican leaders of the Legislature still have work ahead of themselves to undo the decision they see as unjust. A Wednesday vote indicates that lingering partisan sentiments continue to surround the impeachments.

Will Price / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia Senate Education Committee has approved a bill that would allow homeschool and private school students to participate in public school extracurricular activities under the state’s Secondary School Activities Commission. 

Solar panels arriving in Fayette County.
Colleen Laffey

A legislative proposal that would allow limited solar development by West Virginia’s two electric utilities has ignited intense debate in the energy committees of both the lower and upper houses of the state Legislature.

As the senior population grows in West Virginia, more of the state's elderly are living alone, with disability, and facing hunger. We focus on the cost of addressing these needs – and not addressing these needs. We also hear the latest updates from the West Virginia Legislature.

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Correction: House Bill 4543 to cap insulin copays at $25 was referred to the House Judiciary Committee for consideration on Monday. An earlier version of this article on Feb. 4, 2020, stated it was moving to the full House of Delegates. 

We highlight the multiple challenges West Virginia’s active military members and veterans face, and we explore legislation addressing many of those concerns. We also bring you the latest news from the West Virginia Legislature.

The West Virginia Legislature has completed its third full week of the 2020 session. Several issues have stirred up debate so far, including a bill that would repeal a tax on manufacturing equipment and inventory and another that would create an Intermediate Court of Appeals. We bring you the latest on these issues and more on this week’s reporter roundtable.

Rape Kits
Pat Sullivan / AP

West Virginia may soon require the speedy testing and collection of rape kits under a bill passed by the West Virginia House of Delegates on Friday.

Over the last few years, West Virginia lawmakers have passed dozens of bills, creating policy and changing existing code, in an effort to respond to the state’s drug crisis. We take a closer look at that epidemic and at the work that continues to address it.

Capitol, West Virginia State Capitol
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia House Health and Human Resources Committee is sending a bill focused on recovering runaway and missing foster care children to the full House with a favorable recommendation.

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