The recent special session to elect new Delegate Tim Miley, D-Harrison, as Speaker of the House cost state taxpayers $38,000.
In addition to their $20,000 a year salaries, lawmakers who live more than 50 miles from Charleston are eligible for a $131 per diem to cover food, lodging and other expenses. Those within 50 miles of the Capitol can claim $55. All lawmakers can claim mileage costs.
House Clerk’s Office fiscal officer Randy McCoy said only one local lawmaker, Delegate Brady Paxton, claimed any significant charges during the recent special session.
Paxton, D-Putnam, received about $19 for mileage and a $131 per diem. He has a history of collecting the maximum allowable expenses. He collected $357 in mileage plus $7,860 in per diems, the maximum allowed during the 60-day regular session earlier this year.
In other news…
- State Sen. Evan Jenkins, D-Cabell, might switch parties to run against Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., in 2014.
- New hi-tech kiosks could soon replace snail mail, collect calls and through-the-glass visitations at state jails. Eventually, loved ones will be able to chat with inmates through a video chat program (for $1 a minute). I know what you’re thinking, but don’t worry. Officials assured me the program comes with “face recognition software,” which means it will recognize anything that…um…isn’t a face.
- Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., raised nearly $770,000 for her U.S. Senate campaign in the last quarter. That brings her grand total to $2.87 million, according to CQ Roll Call.