CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) – The West Virginia Senate has voted 23-11 to create a new intermediate court with six judges that would hear appeals of civil judgments from circuit courts, as well as decisions from family courts and final rulings from state agencies.
The judges would be chosen by the governor from a commission’s lists and confirmed by the Senate.
They would serve 10-year terms and be paid $130,000 a year.
West Virginia’s Supreme Court, which currently appeals, has estimated it would cost $11.7 million the first year to establish the new court then about $10 million annually.
Republican lawmakers backing the proposal estimate the cost below $3 million, especially if the Legislature and voters approve their proposed constitutional amendment that would give them budgetary control over the courts.