By Philip . . . On February 28th of the 2022 legislative session, the Senate Judiciary Committee introduced SB 728, quickly read it three times, passed, and engrossed it in the Senate 33 – 0. On March 2nd, SB728 has forwarded to the House and the House Judiciary Committee. If passed, the bill would have required all West Virginia registered citizens to pay an annual fee of $75.00, which would amount to approx. $478,800.00 in additional yearly revenues from registered citizens on the West Virginia sex offense registry alone. The fee would also apply to everyone required to register via the West Virginia Central Abuse Registry, which includes child abuse registrants, a non-publicly internet displayed registry. According to the text of the bill, all collected fees would be earmarked to the West Virginia State Police to “… defray costs associated with maintaining the registry.” [updated] Fortunately for all WV registrants, the House ran out of time, the 2022 session ended on March 12th, and the bill died (Sine Die) after its 1st reading in the house. We anticipate this bill will be reintroduced in the 2023 legislative session [updated].
West Virginians for Rational Sexual Offense Laws (WVRSOL) provide written opposition testimony to the House Judiciary Committee, which can be read in full below.