Senate Bill 272, which would create more opportunities for businesses to classify workers as independent contractors, is possibly one step from passage in the House of Delegates.

The bill is on 3rd (and final) Reading on Wednesday in the House, with the right to amend. That in itself is an important factor — if the bill is amendment, it will have to go back to the Senate for concurrence. But if it is passed as it is, it goes to the desk of Gov. Jim Justice, who proposed the legislature.

The bill was reported on in depth last week by Mountain State Spotlight.

Another very negative bill, House Bill 2626, is in the House Finance Committee. That would close Lakin, Withrow, and Hopemont hospitals, plus the Manchin Senior Care Center.

The bill that would essentially privatize the Department of Highways, HB 2720, is in the Workforce Development Committee.

There was good news Tuesday, as the House passed SB 39. That bill prohibits insurance companies — including the PEIA — from requiring prior authorization for tests to stage cancer. That would go into effect on July 1, 2022.

Other bills we are watching:

  • SB 11: Declaring work stoppage or strike by public employees to be lawful. That has passed both houses and is going to the governor.
  • SB 7: Limits political activity by public employees. That passed the Senate 34-0, and is in the House Judiciary Committee.
  • SB 245: Providing 11-month window to allow PERS members to purchase service credit. That bill is in committee and has not been taken up.
  • House Bill 2117: Provides certain employees in the DOH increases in annual pay. That bill is in committee and has not been taken up.
  • HB 2142: Establishing seniority rights for public employees. That bill is in committee and has not been taken up.

We need your help in lobbying for helpful bills and against negative bills. Here is the House roster and the Senate rosters.

If you have questions or want us to track a certain bill, e-mail to info@uelocal170.org.