W.Va. magistrate pay proposal spurs debate - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

W.Va. magistrate pay proposal spurs debate


Legislation to hike salaries for West Virginia magistrates and top court staff is testing the newfound muscle of House Republicans.

GOP delegates tried without success Monday to derail a proposal to equalize pay for county magistrates, their assistants and top court clerks. That pay now varies and is based on a county's population.

The 43-52 party line vote came after the House Judiciary committee advanced the bill last week. It's scheduled for a Wednesday vote on passage to the Senate.

Republicans now hold 46 of the House's 100 seats following November election gains. They question why this bill has advanced without a review by the House Finance Committee. They're challenging the need for the measure, when improving public school appears a higher priority.

Democratic leaders blasted the GOP gambit.

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