CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The state Senate will vote Thursday on the resolution that will propose an amendment to the state Constitution to put the legislature in control of the budget of the state court system.
Two-thirds of both legislative chambers — 23 senators and 67 delegates — would have to vote in favor of of the resolution, which would add an amendment to the West Virginia Constitution. The voting public will also have to pass the amendment in the general election in November.
Senator Mike Romano (D-Harrison) unsuccessfully tried to amend the resolution Wednesday. Romano said if the constitution is changed and the legislature wanted to cut the court system’s budget by more than three percent, it would need a two-thirds vote, a super majority, in the Senate and House to do so.
“I don’t think it’s too much to ask for the legislators of the future to anticipate if they are going to cut a judicial budget more than three percent to determine whether more than two-thirds of the legislature is in favor or not,” Romano argued.
But Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Trump (R-Morgan) spoke against the proposal saying it would gut what the legislature is trying to do.
“I want, I think we all want, the judicial branch of our government to be able to do its job,” Trump said. “It would be our responsibility if this passes to make sure that they have the resources necessary to do the job that they do.”
The resolution comes following questions about spending for furniture and renovations in the Supreme Court of Appeals chamber.