This week, the West Virginia House of Delegates Constitutional Revision Committee continued to discuss proposals regarding the election of West Virginia's Governor.
Although a special Primary and General election for Governor now has been signed into law and set for later this year, the issue of whether or not to create the office of Lt. Governor would require a Constitutional amendment and still is under discussion.
Committee concensus seems to be building on a proposal to create the office of an unsalaried Lt. Governor, who also would be appointed by the Governor to one of West Virginia's current cabinet level positions. As such, the Lt. Governor would be paid for the duties and responsibilities of that cabinet officer position. This would eliminate the extra expense to taxpayers from the creation of the office of Lt. Governor, and also resolve future confusions and contentions about how to fill a vacancy in the office of Governor.
Other Constitutional amendment proposals submitted to the committee include my proposal (HJR 40) to create an independent commission to determine legislative redistricting in the House of Delegates and the Senate following every census. This would create legislative election districts which more fairly and realistically reflect local communities, instead of the current practice of "gerrymandering" legislative districts to favor political parties and incumbent legislators.
Another of my proposed Constitutional amendments is HJR41, to change the start of the sixty day legislative session each year from January to March. This would make it much easier for legislators and constituents to avoid severe winter weather in their travels to the State Capitol in Charleston.
Finally, I have made it a deliberate personal policy to not participate in lobbyist receptions and dinners. I also make it a point and a personal practice to arrive at the State House between 5:30 AM and 6:00 AM each session day and make a sincere effort to respond to all constituent inquiries as well as to be available to meet with them during the day. My Charleston telephone number is (304) 340-3122 and my email address is Larry.Kump@wvhouse.gov.