- Associated Press - Saturday, March 12, 2016

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - The Latest on the final day of West Virginia’s 60-day legislative session Saturday:

11 p.m.

West Virginia lawmakers have compromised to pass a bill requiring voters to show identification while at the polls.

The House and Senate agreed Saturday on a less strict bill requiring people to show anything from driver’s licenses to hunting licenses. Many documents that qualify wouldn’t have to contain photos, including utility bills or bank statements within six months of the election, or voter registration cards.

Instead of presenting ID, a voter could also be accompanied to the polls by an adult who has known the voter at least six months, including poll workers. Otherwise, voters would cast provisional ballots.



The requirements would be effective in 2018.

The bill also includes an automatic voter registration program.

The bill now heads to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin.

___

7:42 p.m.

Doubt over man’s contribution to global warming won’t spur West Virginia lawmakers to block new science standards in schools.

Lawmakers agreed Saturday on a bill that would allow education science standards to take effect in July. A previous House version stripped them for a least a year over global warming doubts. Senators pushed back to keep the science standards.

The vast majority of peer-reviewed studies, science organizations and climate scientists say global warming stems largely from manmade sources. A major source of carbon emissions is burning coal, and West Virginia is a key coal mining state.

The bill also nixes a standardized test aligned with the Common Core standards.

The measure heads to Democratic Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin.

___

5:32 p.m.

West Virginia lawmakers have joined a group of states calling for a convention to add a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

The GOP-led Senate voted 17-16 Saturday for a resolution favoring the convention. The Republican-led House passed it Friday.

It says 27 other states have passed similar measures.

Opponents worry convention delegates could do a wholesale rewrite of the Constitution. Proponents say the convention could be very narrowly focused.

Thirty-four states would need to pass resolutions to hold the convention, which would be the first since 1787 in Philadelphia. Thirty-eight states would need to ratify an amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

The progressive Center on Budget Policy and Priorities says some states have rescinded resolutions, but it’s up to Congress to determine if the 34-state mark is met.

___

5:04 p.m.

A push to let voters decide, county by county, if restaurants and other businesses should serve alcohol on Sunday mornings has cleared the Legislature.

The House and Senate agreed Saturday on a bill that would allow county referendums to move the start of some Sunday alcohol sales from 1 p.m. to 10 a.m.

A bill that would have made the change statewide without a vote has failed in recent years.

Restaurants, distilleries and wineries are among the businesses that would be able to sell on-site booze earlier.

The bill heads to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin for his approval. The 60-day legislative session ends Saturday.

___

1:30 p.m.

West Virginia Republicans have backed away from rejecting seven of Democratic Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s appointees, including prominent Democrats and labor leaders.

Senators confirmed the nominations yesterday. A GOP-led committee had dropped them from consideration this week, irking Democratic senators and Tomblin.

State Democratic Party Chairwoman Belinda Biafore was confirmed for the Women’s Commission after previously being rejected.

Kenny Perdue, state AFL-CIO president, was confirmed for the Workforce Investment Board.

Democrat Elaine Harris, independent Michael Smith and Republican Troy Giatras were confirmed for the Public Employees Insurance Agency board.

James Frio was confirmed for the Auctioneers Board.

Anna Dailey withdrew consideration for the State Personnel Board.

Senators considered 454 nominations.

___

11:35 a.m.

West Virginia delegates have rejected a less strict version of a bill requiring voters to show identification while at the polls, possibly killing it for the year.

The House voted Saturday to reject a Senate version requiring people to show anything from driver’s licenses to credit cards. Many documents that qualify wouldn’t have to contain photos, including utility bills or paychecks within six months of the election, or voter registration cards.

Instead of presenting ID, a voter could also be accompanied to the polls by an adult who has known the voter at least six months, including poll workers.

Otherwise, voters would cast provisional ballots.

It would be effective in 2018.

The House previously passed a version that included fewer ID options without photos. The legislative session ends Saturday.

___

11:10 a.m.

West Virginia is finishing a lawmaking session defined by a Republican agenda that sometimes shrugged off the Democratic governor.

Lawmakers also still could be months away from solving a budget stalemate fueled by downturns in coal and natural gas.

The 60-day election year session is expected to wrap up in Saturday’s late hours.

Lawmakers overrode four vetoes by Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin, including repeal of the state’s prevailing wage, a push to let people carry concealed guns without permits or training, and a ban on a second-trimester abortion method.

They still haven’t decided how to cover a $466 million budget gap. The standoff continues over whether to raise taxes, make more cuts or tap reserves to bridge about $130 million worth of disagreement between the House and Senate.

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