West Virginia Senate narrowly passes intermediate court bill

    West Virginia Senate narrowly passes a bill Monday to create an intermediate court in the state. (MGN Online)<p>{/p}

    The West Virginia Senate has narrowly passed a bill that would create an intermediate court.

    The Senate approved the bill 17-16 Monday. One senator did not vote.

    A similar bill is pending in the House Judiciary Committee.

    Under the Senate version, the new court would consist of three judges with staggered terms starting in July 2020. The judges would be paid $130,000 a year.

    The court would hear appeals of civil judgments from circuit courts. It would not have jurisdiction in criminal or family court cases or juvenile proceedings.

    Senate President Mitch Carmichael is the bill's lead sponsor. Morgan County Republican Charles Trump says the bill "will allow appeals to move faster than they do now."

    Harrison County Democrat Michael Romano said the bill is "a new layer of government" and "a waste of time."

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