West Virginia Legislature

West Virginia Legislature

Infobox Legislature
name = West Virginia Legislature
coa_pic = WV State Seal.svg
coa-pic =
session_room = Wvstatecapitalbldg.jpg
house_type = Bicameral
houses = Senate
House of Delegates
leader1_type = President of the Senate
leader1 = Earl Ray Tomblin
party1 = (D)
election1 = January 11, 1995
leader2_type = Speaker of the House
leader2 = Richard Thompson
party2 = (D)
election2 = January 10, 2007
members = 134
p_groups = Democratic Party
Republican Party
election3 = November 7, 2006
meeting_place = West Virginia State Capitol, Charleston
website = http://www.legis.state.wv.us/

The West Virginia Legislature is the state legislature of the U.S. state of West Virginia. A bicameral legislative body, the Legislature is split between the upper Senate and the lower House of Delegates. It was established under Article VI of the West Virginia Constitution following the state's split from Virginia during the American Civil War in 1863. As with its neighbor and former constituent Virginia General Assembly, the legislature's lower house is also referred to as a "House of Delegates."

The Legislature convenes in the State Capitol building in Charleston.


Senators are elected for terms of four years, and delegates for terms of two years. These terms are staggered, meaning that not all 34 State Senate seats are up every election: some are elected presidential election years and some are up during midterm elections.


Regular sessions of the Legislature commence on the second Wednesday of January of each year. However, following the election of a new governor, the session starts in January with the governor's address but then adjourns until February. On the first day of the session, members of both the House and the Senate sit in joint session in the House Chamber where the governor presents his or her legislative program. The length of the general session may not go beyond 60 calendar days unless extended by a concurrent resolution adopted by a two-thirds vote of each house. The governor may convene the Legislature for extraordinary sessions. Governor Joe Manchin III has already called three special sessions of the legislature during the first year of his first term. Given the part time nature of the legislature of West Virginia, this is not uncommon.

Origination of bills

Bills, even revenue bills, and resolutions may originate in either house.

Veto override

For budget bills or supplementary appropriations bills, two-thirds of the members elected to each house are required to override the governor's veto of a bill or items or parts thereof. For all other bills, a simple majority of each house is required.

ee also

*West Virginia House of Delegates
*West Virginia Senate
*West Virginia State Capitol
*List of members of the 78th West Virginia House of Delegates
*List of members of the 78th West Virginia Senate
*List of members of the 77th West Virginia House of Delegates
*List of members of the 77th West Virginia Senate

External links

* [http://www.legis.state.wv.us West Virginia Legislature Homepage]

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