Charleston, W.Va. – West Virginia Secretary of State Natalie E. Tennant announced on the last day of the 2013 regular legislative session that bills affecting each division of the office passed and now await the Governor’s signature to become law.
Below is a short description of each bill, according to division.
- Senate Bill 477 allows citizens to fill out their voter registration application electronically.
- House Bill 3139 authorizes qualified investigators employed by the Secretary of State’s Office to carry a concealed firearm.
- Senate Bill 535 relates to voter registration lists and how they are maintained.
- Senate Bill 145 is an election investigation code clean-up bill. It changes the requirement that the Secretary of State’s Office must complete an election law violation investigation within 90 days.
- Senate Bill 527 creates procedures for how offices such as United States Senator, United States House of Representatives, and Governor are filled if a vacancy occurs.
- House Bill 3135 increases the time to certify new voting systems and requires precinct by precinct election results to be made available only after an election canvas.
- House Bill 2805 makes the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals Public Financing Pilot Program a permanent program.
- Senate Bill 482 sets up a subscription service for candidates and parties to buy voter registration lists.
Business and Licensing Division:
- Senate Bill 426 clarifies the definition of “false” or “fraudulent” Uniform Commercial Code filing, and provides for a civil and criminal penalty for filing a false or fraudulent UCC document.
- House Bill 2554 provides for foreign corporations to reinstate in the same manner as domestic corporations or limited liability companies.
- House Bill 2553 allows the Secretary of State to dissolve a corporation if a necessary professional license has been revoked or the entity is in default with the Bureau of Employment Programs.
- House Bill 2567 establishes procedures for the administrative dissolution by the Secretary of State of limited partnerships and for the revocation and reinstatement of a foreign limited partnership’s certificate of authority.
Administrative Law Division:
- House Bill 2747 changes West Virginia’s open meetings law, requiring the Secretary of State’s Office website to be the official filing place for notices of meetings for at least five business days instead of publication in the State Register for five days. This bill also defines “emergency meeting” to mean “any meeting called by a governing body for the purpose of addressing an unexpected event which requires immediate attention because it poses a threat to public health or safety, a threat of damage to public or private property, or a potential material financial loss or other potential substantial harm to a public agency or to the members of the public which it serves.”
- House Bill 2542 eliminates the paper copies of the State Register and establishes the published online version as the official distribution of information.
- House Bill 2689 approves legislative rules promulgated by the Secretary of State’s Office regarding the Address Confidentiality Program, the regulation of late voter registration for returning military members, and for the procedure to raise funds for party headquarters.
Each of the bills now awaits the signature of Governor Earl Ray Tomblin to become law.