Today is the last day of the 2013 legislative session for Delegate John Nelson, R-Boone. A member of the Air National Guard, he will leave tomorrow to begin officer training. Click here to read Dave’s feature piece about Nelson, and learn how this young Republican got elected in a Democrat stronghold.
In other news:
- The House of Delegates on Thursday passed a bill that would allow police to pull over drivers not wearing their seat belts. It was a contentious issue in the lower house, with 35 Democrats and 20 Republicans casting “aye” votes to beat the 44 (similarly bipartisan) “nays.” West Virginia already has a seat belt law on the books, but it is currently a secondary offense. Drivers have to be pulled over for some other infraction — speeding or running a stop sign, for instance — before police can bust them for failing to wear a seat belt.
- Earlier this week I wrote about Senate President Jeff Kessler’s compromise bill to lower table game fees for some state casinos. Sen. Herb Snyder, D-Jefferson, drastically amended that bill during its appearance in the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday. Kessler and the state racing industry are not happy with the changes.
- Kessler also told me the Senate will not move forward with its version of the Employment and Housing Non-Discrimination Act, fearing any version passed by the chamber will meet the same fate as the House bill, which died earlier this week.
- In its second meeting on Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved a bill to allow the Parkersburg South High School mascot to carry a musket. Members also OK’d a bill allowing video screens in the front seats of automobiles. That statute has not been updated since 1951.