The proposal discussed Thursday also has a "revolving door" provision to make legislators and high-ranking state officials wait a year to register as lobbyists.
The House had added that requirement after Larry Puccio, former chief of staff to Gov. Joe Manchin, became a lobbyist for gambling, health care, and coal companies a week after he left his public post.
Other officials also have left state government for lobbying jobs over the past year. Former state tax commissioner Christopher Morris became West Virginia American Water Co.'s top lobbyist; and former Manchin aide Scott Cosco left to direct government and regulatory affairs for Frontier Communications in West Virginia.
| Commissioners approved an opinion saying Educational Broadcasting Authority employees should not solicit funds for the Friends of Public Broadcasting or the West Virginia Public Broadcasting Foundation, two private non-profit organizations that raise money for West Virginia Public Broadcasting.
EBA employees often participate in pledge drives. The opinion, which takes effect next July, says the employees can solicit funds for the EBA itself, but not the two private organizations.
The EBA had requested the opinion after a report by the state Legislative Auditor questioned the use of public resources for the two private organizations. The auditor's report also said the set-up has led to the circumvention of state purchasing and travel regulations, and to a lack of transparency.
The opinion encourages EBA officials to ask legislators for changes if they want employees to continue raising funds for the two non-profit organizations.
| Commission Chairman Kemp Morton announced that Commissioner Larry Rowe submitted his resignation this week.
After the meeting, Rowe told the Gazette he resigned because he hopes to be appointed to the West Virginia State University board. Ethics Commission members are not allowed to serve on any other public board.
Rowe, a former state senator, had served on the Ethics Commission for five years.
| Commissioners signed off on employment exemptions for four state officials: Health and Human Resources Secretary Patsy Hardy, schools Superintendent Steve Paine, and two people in the Office of Miners' Health and Safety - former director Ron Wooten and administrator Terry Farley. The exemptions allow public officials to seek work in regulated private industries. Wooten resigned from his job Wednesday.
Reach Alison Knezevich at alis...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1240.