Legislative column: Legislative session coming to a close

As the West Virginia Legislature reaches its “crossover day,” when all bills must pass the legislative body in which they were introduced and transferred to the other legislative body for consideration, the days become longer and the process becomes more complicated. Our Legislature has, on several occasions, held double sessions in order to give legislation the opportunity to continue to move forward. While this time of the session is hectic, I enjoy the chance to represent and work hard for all the citizens of the First District.

Bills that are not reported to the floor of their respective body will die in committee. Therefore, committees have been meeting more often and for longer periods of time in order to review and consider as many bills as possible. After each bill passes its respective chamber, it will go through the same process in the opposite chamber. As a body, we understand the importance of this time in the Legislature, and we do our best to make the 60-day session have significant positive impacts on our state. Now that we are near the end of session, I believe we are on track to creating positive changes for West Virginia.

One recent bill passed in the House of Delegates is significant to the honoring of our veterans. House Bill 4350 involves “providing for the awarding of a West Virginia Veterans Medal and ribbon, and a West Virginia Service Cross and ribbon to certain qualifying West Virginia Veterans.”

HB 4350 is important to both the veterans it celebrates and to the public. I commend the House for passing this piece of legislation, and I believe it is an extremely meaningful step in honoring West Virginians who have fought for our rights by serving in the armed forces. The struggles these men and women have faced in leaving their families behind and fighting for our freedoms are absolutely worth our respect and gratitude. I am proud to support legislation that honors these heroes, and I would like to extend a big “thank you” to all veterans for your service to our country.

Contact information: Facebook page: Randy Swartzmiller, or follow me on Twitter: @WV_Delegate; or my e-mail: rswartzmiller@gmail.com or write to: Randy Swartzmiller, State Delegate, Room 242, Building 1 State Capitol Complex Charleston, WV 25305; or call my Capitol Office: 304.340.3138 or Mobile: 304.479.5140

(Swartzmiller is the speaker pro tempore of the House of Delegates, and represents the 1st District, including Hancock County and parts of Brooke County)