Delegate wants to reduce size of W.Va. House, Senate

Published: Mar. 17, 2021 at 4:53 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WTAP) - A Wood County House of Delegates member wants his legislature’s membership cut in half.

Delegate Shannon Kimes says the House has too many members to govern efficiently. He has introduced a bill calling for the membership of the 100-member House to be reduced to 50. The bill would also reduce the Senate to 17 members.

Kimes argues each member represents one-third the number of people his counterparts in other states currently represent.

He adds larger states have fewer members in their state legislatures, while West Virginia has the same number of legislators in a state whose population is declining.

“We need a state government that is laser focused on economic growth not growth of government spending and programs,” Kimes recently said in a statement.  :Before the legislature tries to convince the Judicial and Executive branches of government to control spending it needs to start in its own bodies.”

When asked Wednesday whether he thinks the bill will pass, Kimes answered “no”, adding he doesn’t believe current members will support eliminating their positions.

But he said fewer members would result in the public being less confused about who is representing them.

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