Dedication

This website is devoutly dedicated to all of Larry's friends and associates, both early and late, who have influenced and mentored him. However, it also should be noted that, being who they are, a majority of them have been late most of the time.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

The WV Legislature - Inquiring Minds Want to Know

Watching our state elected officials at work is not for the faint of heart.

The end product of our legislative process far too often demonstrates why West Virginia's standard of living recently was named the worst in the nation. It also gives concerned citizens pause to ponder why Mountaineers are fleeing and our population is dwindling.

The following is only a partial list of dubious legislative proposals (bills) that survived "Cross-Over" Day (the last day for legislation to be approved by the originating Legislative Chamber) and which still are under consideration by the Legislature in the last few days of this year's 2014 session, which ends on Saturday, March 8th:

HB 4393 is one example of more bureaucratic legislation that already has passed the House of Delegates. Purporting to protect the public safety of citizens from dangerous animals, it would set up a complex system of registration and fees for owners of "exotic" pets. If it was a late night cable television show, it would be titled "Bureaucrats Gone Wild!". Tell the Senate that we need less meddling bureaucracy, not more.

Another legislative proposal passed by the House of Delegates is HB 4304. It is seemingly benign and bicyclist friendly, mandating the creation of bicycle lanes on public roads, However, West Virginia currently has a severe highway funding crisis. We can't even properly maintain and repair our current transportation system. Let's tell the Senate to fix the potholes before we worry about bike paths.

HB 4490 is yet another bill approved by the House of Delegates. It is an attempt to hobble the Constitutional authority of our Attorney General to represent citizens on behalf of our 2nd Amendment rights, energy needs, consumer complaints, and much more. Tell the Senate that HB 4490 would be a giant step backward for the rights of West Virginians.

And then there's SB 6, that was passed by the Senate. It's an attempt to crack down on illegal "Meth" drug manufacture, but does so by requiring citizens to get a Doctor's prescription for over-the-counter "Sudafed" cold medication. Punishing the many for the illegal activities of the criminal few is a travesty of justice. The House of Delegates needs to have a clear head when we vote on this one.

Why were much more vital legislative proposals (to increase our economic prosperity, decrease bureaucratic regulations and taxes, and protect our individual liberty) not even given legislative committee hearings and votes by the leadership in the House of Delegates and Senate?

Inquiring minds want to know.

The Sanctity of Life

A news story from the Thursday, February 27th, 2014 edition of the Martinsburg "Journal" newspaper, by Erika Wells: CHARLESTON - A bill to prohibit abortion after 20 weeks passed the House by a 79-11 vote on Tuesday. Delegate David G. Perry, D-Fayette, drafted a bill, HB 4588, to protect unborn children who are capable of experiencing pain about 20 weeks after fertilization, except when the mother has a medical emergency. "The point of the bill is to prevent abortions after the 20th week because babies are capable of feeling pain," said Delegate Eric Householder, R-Berkeley, who voted for the bill. "Some of our colleagues on the other side of the aisle tried to make it sound like basically, we were prohibiting abortions. That's not what the bill's about." Assistant Majority Whip Tiffany Lawrence, D-Jefferson, who voted against the bill, said there is similar legislation in other states that has been ruled unconstitutional. Lawrence said the bill infringes on privacy. "My vote against HB 4588 wasn't a pro-choice or pro-life vote." Lawrence said. "It was a pro-constitution vote. ... As a legislator, I took an oath to uphold the constitution. The bill also violates the federal (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) laws by asking for and collecting patient information that is currently protected." Household said the bill does not violate HIPAA regarding deciding to have a legal abortion. "If someone can make the choice to go in to have an abortion on the second week or third week, there hasn't been a violation of HIPAA," he said. Lawrence said the bill, which provides for civil and criminal penalties, fails to provide provisions to protect physicians and omitted additional exceptions. "I was also concerned that the bill did not address situations where rape and incest exist," Lawrence said. "The bill provides for prosecution of physicians who are helping save a woman's life and imposes criminal penalties on these physicians which is extremely concerning to me. ... We have decisions on the books that state Roe v. Wade is the law of the land." Perry said there is existing code that provides for such exemptions, and a West Virginia or federal court would have to determine the constitutionality of the bill. Householder said the majority of the women in the House voted for the bill. "Of the women that voted, there werer 15 women that voted yes," Householder said. "Six women voted no, so the majority of the women in the House support this bill." Delegate Larry D. Kump, R-Berkeley, who voted for the bill, said one of the amendments made Tuesday was to specify times served by violators between one and five years. "The bill was open-ended to where if a doctor did violate the provision, the way the bill was written-written by the Democrats-with a provision said that they could have one year or longer," he said. "It could be 100 years that someone serves." After an apparent discrepancy over committee hearings and whether the bill was properly discussed, the bill passed. Householder, who serves on the Judiciary and Health committees, said those who oppose the bill based on claims that it violates the Constitution should have allowed for more thorough review of the legislation. "If they felt that there were constitutional issues with the bill, then they should have allowed us to work it out in the committee process," said Householder. "Unfortunately, I know some are upset, but the ones that were leading the charge out there Tuesday night were also the ones that were preventing any debate in any committee." Perry said the bill was discussed for about three hours on the floor on Tuesday. A physician in the House said doctors consider a fetus a child at this stage, said Kump. "It's a moral issue," Kump said. "I understand both sides, but when it comes down to it, a child's life has to be protected." The bill will go to the Senate.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Eastern Panhandle Legislative News Update #6


Participating in the Monday morning, February 24th, 2014 meeting of the West Virginia Eastern Panhandle Legislative Delegation (Hampshire, Morgan, Berkeley, & Jefferson Counties) at the West Virginia State House were Delegates Larry D. Kump, Mike Folk, Paul Espinosa, Larry Faircloth, Daryl Cowles, John Overington, Steven Skinner, and Ruth Rowan, as well as Senator Don Cookman.

West Virginia Transportation Secretary Paul Mattox and Highways Chief Engineer Robert Pennington were guest participants. They discussed road conditions and needs within the Eastern Panhandle. Secretary Mattox said that West Virginia is spending about $162 million per year on road re-surfacing, using a 28 year cycle, although the preferred cycle is 12 years. It also was reported that pot-hole repairs will begin with the advent of warmer weather. In 2015 or 2016, work will begin on widening the rest of I-81 in West Virginia, in tandem with Maryland and including a widening of the I-81 bridge of the Potomac River (the Potomac River is owned by Maryland). Delegate Kump strongly urged that more intensive coordination be done with law enforcement during this project. He also pushed for improvements on Route #9 in Western Berkeley County and in Morgan County.

The constitutional deadline now has passed for all legislative proposals (bills) to have been reported out of their originating committees within the House of Delegates and the Senate. The end of the 2014 Legislative Session will be at Midnight, Saturday, March 8th. Nevertheless, the Legislature will meet for a few days or more after their March 8th adjournment, in order to give final consideration and approval of the budget for the fiscal year that begins on July 1st of 2014.

Delegate Kump reported on HB 4007 (Protecting the Property Rights of Homeowners with residential Septic Systems). Although not on the original agenda of the House of Delegates Political Subdivision Committee that was posted on Wednesday morning, February 19th, it was later included as an agenda item for that day's committee meeting. However, the committee was not able to get to HB 4007 and one other bill within the remaining committee time available. Delegate Kump now is working with Delegate Tiffany Lawrence, Committee Chair, to draft and cosponsor a special legislative resolution that will authorize the creation an interim legislative study of this issue by a joint interim committee of the House of Delegates and Senate. He also will be pursuing this issue at the local county levels within his district.

Senator Cookman urged support for SB 378, which would allow waste service vehicles to be equipped with yellow or amber flashing warning lights.

Delegate Rowan urged support for HB 4137, to improve funding for special needs students. HB 4137 subsequently was passed by the House of Delegates, and now is pending consideration by the Senate.

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Saturday, February 22, 2014

"Do What is Right" & "The Unborn Child Protection Act"


Some of you have asked me for a little more information about the Church hymn, "Do What is Right", which also mirrors my political perspective. This musical prayer was written in 1857 and was a comfort and an inspiration to our pioneers in our American West. It simply counsels us to "Do what is right. Let the consequence follow. Battle for freedom in spirit and might...Do what is right, be faithful and fearless...". And so, my personal pledge to all Mountaineers continues: to always do my best to do what is right, regardless of consequence.

In consequence of Sunday, February 23rd, 2014 being the last day for legislative proposals (bills) to be reported out of their originating committee, most bills will not pass that hurdle (as always is the case in every state legislative process throughout our nation). The Legislature's time and attention subsequently will focus on those bills which have survived passage in the originating chamber (House of Delegates or Senate).

One of these bills, HB 2364, "The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act", was among those bills which so far had failed to get committee hearings. A concerted effort, to discharge this Pro-Life bill out of committee and be voted upon by all Delegates, failed on a tie vote of 48-48. Eastern Panhandle Delegates voting in favor of HB 2364 were Delegates Cowles, Espinosa, Faircloth, Folk, Householder, Kump, Overington, and Rowan. Voting against HB 2364 were Delegates Barrett, Lawrence, and Skinner. (Roll Call vote #57, February 11th, 2014. For information about how all the other Delegates voted on HB 2364, visit www.legis.state.wv.us, click on "Bill Status, and then enter "bill number" 2363).

However, after that failed vote by the entire House of Delegates, there was continued controversy, which culminated in contentious confrontations and calumny on the floor of the House of Delegates during the Friday, February 14th floor session. During that discussion, the House of Delegates Health & Human Resources Committee Chairperson announced that he had decided to add HB 2364 to his committee's hearing agenda. He did not do that, but instead substituted a quickly drafted new bill (HB 4588), on the same issue and with different sponsors. The committee subsequently voted in favor of HB 4588, on a voice vote and with no recorded dissent, and HB 4588 went on for further consideration by the House of Delegates Judiciary Committee. The Judiciary Committee approved passage of HB 4588 on Friday afternoon (February 21st). It now is awaiting further consideration by the entire House of Delegates.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Residential Property Rights Update

Please click on the "blue" link below to read the entire news story from the Martinsburg, West Virginia "Journal" newspaper:
Delegates working to revitalize forced hook-up bill - journal-news.net | News, sports, jobs, community information for Martinsburg - The Journal

Source: journal-news.net

CHARLESTON — A bill to address property rights involving sewer and water hookups will have to wait until the next legislative sessio.

 

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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Eastern Panhandle Legislative News Update #5


Participating in the Monday morning, February 17th, 2014 meeting of the West Virginia Eastern Panhandle Legislative Delegation (Hampshire, Morgan, Berkeley, & Jefferson Counties) were Delegates Larry D. Kump, Paul Espinosa, Larry Faircloth, Daryl Cowles, Mike Folk, John Overington, and Ruth Rowan, as well as Senator Don Cookman.

Reverend J. Charles Riecks updated legislators about commuter rail access issues.

Art Thomm and about twenty Eastern Panhandle members of the West Virginia Citizens Defense League also participated in this legislative meeting.

Delegate Kump reported that HB 4007, which would protect the property rights of residential home owners who have private septic systems and wells, had not yet received a hearing or vote before the House of Delegates Political Subdivisions Committee. He also reported that he will not be giving up on this issue.

Some, but not all, legislative proposals which have been co-sponsored by Delegate Kump and are still awaiting committee action, are HB 4250 2nd Amendment "Constitutional Carry" Rights (with Delegate Folk, Berkeley County), HB 4479 Voter Identification (with Delegate Ireland, Ritchie County), HB 4219 Audit Highway Division Policies & Practices (with Delegate Gearheart, Mercer County), HB 4447 Increased Competitive Bidding by State Agencies (with Delegate Howell, Mineral County), HB 4464 Enhanced Freedom of Information Act Rights (with Delegate Armstead, Kanawha County), HB 4273 & HB 4274 Allow Sale of Raw Milk (with Delegate Sobonya, Cabell County), HB 4546 Rural Water Pipeline Construction (with Delegate Cadle, Mason County), HB 4569 Requiring law enforcement agencies to publicize reports on seizures of private property (with Delegate Cowles, Morgan County), and HB 4145 Crossbow Hunting (with Delegate Faircloth, Berkeley County).

Delegate Folk reported on HB 4216 (and SB 529), which would protect property owners regarding aircraft operations on private property. He also discussed HB 4378, which would streamline the permit process for dealing with wildlife that damage cultivated crops.

Senator Cookman reported that there has been no action on SB 368, which would reform wholesale gasoline pricing practices.

Delegate Faircloth provided a progress update on SB 373, which would further regulate public water resources and which has passed the House of Delegates Health &
Human Resources Committee.

A representative of the Highway Division will participate in next Monday's meeting
of Eastern Panhandle legislators.

Delegate Kump again noted that all legislative proposals must be reported out the committees in their originating body (House of Delegates or Senate) no later than Sunday, February 23rd. After that date, legislators will concentrate their attention on legislation which already has passed the other originating body (House of Delegates or Senate).

The above summary includes only highlights from the meeting.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Do What is Right

HB 4007 is my legislative proposal (bill) to protect the property rights of residents in owner occupied homes. It would prohibit local West Virginia government sewer and water districts from forcing homeowners to pay many thousands of dollars and paying subsequent monthly service fees to connect with expanding public sewers and water systems, as long as their private wells and septic systems are safe and do not constitute a public safety or health hazard. HB 4007 previously had a public hearing in the Chamber of the West Virginia House of Delegates, wherein private citizens were given the opportunity to speak. However, to continue to be considered by the Legislature, HB 4007 now must have a hearing and a favorable vote by the House of Delegates Political Subdivisions Committee, which is chaired by Delegate Tiffany Lawrence (Jefferson County). The last day that this committee hearing can be held and this committee vote can be taken is Wednesday, February 19th.

HB 2871,Drivers' Licenses (Judiciary Committee), is my proposal to roll back the provisions of the federal "Real ID Act of 2005", which West Virginia subsequently also adopted into state law. This has caused many drivers' license renewal problems for Mountaineer motorists (especially women). Although West Virginia was among the first to make this federal law also into a state law, the United State Department of Homeland Security repeatedly has put off enforcement. Moreover,Seventeen other states have passed laws restricting or banning its implementation within their borders. Federal enforcement of Real ID has been delayed four times since it was supposed to go into effect in 2008. Alaska, Arizona, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, and Washington still have not met these federal standards. Another fifteen states do not yet meet these standards and have received federal extensions until October to do so, and can ask for more extensions after that. (Source: National Conference of State Legislatures)

As this year's Legislative Session quickly is coming to a close, a Church hymn, "Do What is Right", comes to my mind. This musical prayer counsels us to "Do what is right. Let the consequence follow.". My personal pledge to all Mountaineers is to always do my best to do what is right, regardless of the consequences.

And so it goes...


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Monday, February 10, 2014

Eastern Panhandle Legislative News Update #4

Participating in the Monday, February 10th, 2014 meeting of the West Virginia Eastern Panhandle Legislative Delegation (Hampshire, Morgan, Berkeley, & Jefferson Counties) were Delegates Larry D. Kump, Paul Espinosa, Larry Faircloth, Eric Householder, Daryl Cowles, Mike Folk, John Overington, and Ruth Rowan.

Delegate Kump reported on the public hearing held last Thursday night on HB 4007, his proposal to protect the property rights of owners who have private residential septic systems and wells. United States Senator Joe Manchin also sent a representative to observe the citizen testimony at that hearing. The Falling Waters legislator has followed up on that public hearing, with a request to the House of Delegates Political Subdivisions Committee Chairperson (Delegate Tiffany Lawrence), asking for a committee hearing and a vote to pass HB 4007 out of that committee.

He also reported that he is cosponsoring HB 4396 (Finance Committee) with Delegate Joe Ellington (Mercer County), to begin a trial program to reduce gasoline prices, by lowering gasoline taxes in border counties. If successful, this trial program then could be expanded to apply to all of West Virginia.

Delegate Kump is cosponsoring HJR 105 (Judiciary Committee)with Delegate Gary Howell (Mineral County). HJR 105 is an amendment to the West Virginia Constitution, which would further protect our 2nd Amendment rights, by prohibiting the state or any of its subdivisions from maintaining any registry of firearms owned by Mountaineer citizens.

He also reminded fellow legislators that Monday, February 17th, is the last day in which to introduce new legislative proposals (bills).

Delegate Folk announced the endorsement of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) of HB 4216 (Judiciary Committee), which would extend liability protection to land owners for aircraft operations on their property. Delegate Folk also reported that HB 4378 (Agriculture & Natural Resources Committee), which would help farmers deal with destructive wildlife that destroy cultivated crops, is undergoing further revision prior to a committee vote.

Delegate Espinosa reported that he is introducing legislation to tighten up the financial and performance audits of all state government agencies and also audit the State Legislature.

Delegate Householder announced that he is introducing legislation to nullify "Obamacare" in West Virginia.

A request for the Attorney General and also a representative from the Department of Transportation to meet with Eastern Panhandle legislators still is pending.

Note: The above is a partial report of the highlights of the meeting.

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Saturday, February 8, 2014

Property Rights, Drivers' Licenses, Gas Prices, & Guns


HB 4007, is my proposal to prohibit public service districts from forcing those living in owner occupied residences to participate in a public water or sewer systems, except when those private septic systems or wells are proven unsafe or a public safety hazard. If passed and signed into law, HB 4007 also would protect us from being required to pay thousands of dollars and ongoing service fees for these mandated public utilities. This proposal had a public hearing last Thursday, wherein public testimony was received in the Chamber of the West Virginia House of Delegates. A follow-up request, to schedule an official committee hearing and vote on HB 4007, has been made to the Chairperson of the House of Delegates Political Subdivisions Committee, Delegate Tiffany Lawrence (Jefferson County).

I also have introduced HB 2871 (Judiciary Committee), my proposal to roll back the implementation of the federal "REAL ID ACT of 2005", which West Virginia also has adopted and which has caused so many drivers' license renewal problems for many Mountaineer motorists (especially women).

I am a cosponsor of HB 4396 (Finance Committee) with Delegate Joe Ellington (Mercer County), to begin a trial program that would reduce gasoline prices, by lowering gasoline taxes in West Virginia border counties. If successful, this trial program then could be expanded and applied to all of West Virginia.

Also cosponsored by me is HJR 105, with Delegate Gary Howell (Mineral County), which is a proposed amendment to the West Virginia Constitution. This would further protect our 2nd Amendment rights, by prohibiting the state or any of its subdivisions from maintaining any registry of firearms owned by Mountaineer citizens.


Footnote: Contributions for the re-election of Delegate Kump should be sent to "Friends of Larry D. Kump:, P.O. Box 1131, Falling Waters, West Virginia 25419-1131.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Septic Systems vs. Sewers (about last night's public hearing)

A Friday, February 7th, 2014 news article from the Martinsburg Journal newspaper:

by Erika Elaine Wells

CHARLESTON - A proposed bill became a matter of property rights versus public health at a meeting at the Capitol.

A public hearing was held Thursday in the House Chamber to discuss legislation to protect the property rights of residential homeowners who have private septic systems and wells.

Delegate Larry D. Kump, R-Berkeley, introduced a bill, H.B. 4007, to prohibit state public utilities from forcing owner-occupied residences to hook up to a public residential water or sewer system, unless a private system is deemed unsafe for human use or is a public safety hazard.

"There are two opposing sides," Kump said. "Both issues are fairly plain. How to resolve them without causing further distress to private property owners, who feel like their rights are violated, is the question."

A few citizens in attendance talked about topics including the financial impact on owners; failure of water systems; water quality issues; health problems; placing the ability to connect into code; and the rights of property owners, said Assistant Majority Whip Tiffany Lawrence, D-Jefferson, chairperson of the House Political Subdivisions Committee.

Kump said each person was given a few minutes to speak. Those who opposed the bill said banning a forced hook-up would impede on the expansion of sewer and water systems, and public water and sewer systems are safer than private wells and septic tanks. Those in favor of the bill said they did not want to discontinue using septic tanks and wells, which they invested in, that were cleaner than the public water systems.

Kump said he drafted the bill as a result of complaints from Eastern Panhandle citizens, but this is a statewide issue. Co-sponsors include Eastern Panhandle Delegates Michael Folk, Eric Householder and Larry Faircloth, all R-Berkeley.

"The water crisis we had in the Charleston area emphasized that there is value in having a diversification of our waste and water systems," Kump said. "If we have all of our systems under one roof, and it goes bad, it causes a crisis."

In Berkeley County, which has limited water mains, residents are not required to hook up to public water systems. Residents with property within 300 feet of a public sewer line are required to hook up. If the county expands a sewer line, residents are required to connect to the public system. Otherwise, residences incur a monthly fee, regardless of whether a private septic tank is in use.

Kump said public utilities services representatives have said if too many people opt out, residents who are connected to the public system will have billing increases.

If the bill becomes a law, it would not apply to residents who are currently connected to the system. If a resident is exempted under the new law, but their septic system or well become unsafe or stop functioning, the resident would not be eligible for exemption.

Lawrence conducted the meeting, which was attended by a representative sent by Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va, to observe the hearing, Kump said.

Lawrence said she will consult with committee members to decide if they will formally take up in the bill. The committee will review documents they received at the public hearing.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Why It Matters

Some have asked me why I serve in the West Virginia Legislature and why it is important for each and every one of us to stand up and speak out to our government on behalf of our sacred principles of self determination, liberty, and personal accountability.

Click on the link below for the answer to that question:

© 2011 YouTube, LLC
901 Cherry Ave, San Bruno, CA 94066
Postscriptum:

If you feel the same, please send contributions for my re-election to

Friends of Larry D. Kump
P. O. Box 1131
Falling Waters, West Virginia 25419-1131

Monday, February 3, 2014

Eastern Panhandle Legislative News Update #3

Participating in the Monday, February 3rd morning meeting of the West Virginia Eastern Panhandle were Delegates Larry D. Kump, Paul Espinosa, Larry Faircloth, Eric Householder, Daryl Cowles, Mike Folk, John Overington, and Ruth Rowan as well as Senator Craig Blair.

Delegate Kump reported that HB 4007, his proposal to protect the property rights of residential homeowners who have private septic systems and wells, now has been rescheduled for a public hearing at 5:30 PM, Thursday, February 6th in the Chamber of the West Virginia House of Delegates.(The previous public hearing on January 21st had been postponed, due to the sudden and unexpected illness of the Political Subdivisions Committee Chairperson.) This rescheduled public hearing is open to all interested individuals to testify. This is a public hearing and a vote on HB 4007 will NOT be held at that time. HB 4007 also is awaiting a hearing and a vote by the House of Delegates Political Subdivisions Committee. Delegate Kump also discussed HB 2871 (Judiciary Committee), which is his proposal to roll back the implementation of the federal "REAL ID ACT of 2005", which West Virginia also has adopted and which has caused so many drivers' license renewal problems for many Mountaineer motorists (especially women). Eastern Panhandle Delegates Folk and Householder are cosponsors of HB 2871. Finally, Delegate Kump also announced that he and Delegate Folk are cosponsoring a proposal with Delegate Joe Ellington (Mercer County), to begin a pilot program that would reduce gasoline prices.

Senator Blair led discussion on SB 365, which as passed the Senate Government Organization Committee and is pending a hearing by the Senate Finance Committee. This proposal would exempt the elected members of Conservation Districts from the State Ethics Law, in order to enable them and their families to be eligible to receive agriculture grants. He also is continuing to work on gasoline fuel price issues.

Delegate Folk reported on HB 4378, which is pending a hearing in the Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee. It would make it easier for farmers to get permits to control crop damage caused by deer.

Delegate Overington advocated on behalf of HB 4378 (Judiciary Committee), which would further restrict bar closing times.

Delegate Faircloth reported that legislation allowing cross-bow hunting in West Virginia has passed the Agriculture Committee and now is pending a hearing before the Finance Committee.

Delegate Cowles discussed the ongoing difficulties in obtaining state bond funding for sewer plant upgrades and improvements at Cacapon State Park.

Delegate Rowan reported that HB 4137, to address special need student funding allocation issues, has passed the Education Committee and is awaiting a hearing before the Finance Committee.

Delegate Espinosa announced that he soon will be introducing legislation to require an audit of all state agencies. Delegate Kump and others have agreed to be cosponsors.

Attorney General Patrick Morrisey has been invited to participate in next week's meeting.

Representatives from the Division of Highways and also the State Police will be requested to speak at future meetings.