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Breaking News / Featured / Government / News / Virgin Islands / May 7, 2015

ST. THOMAS – The Senate Committee on the Whole also unanimously passed five bills at the Earle B. Ottley Legislative Hall in Charlotte Amalie Wednesday evening with all 15 senators voting in the affirmative. Only one of the six bills under consideration failed, a bill to give $320,000 to Little League Baseball, sponsored by Myron Jackson.

The approved bills will be forwarded on to Gov. Kenneth Mapp for consideration and his possible signature which would make each bill he signs law. The bills approved by the Legislature by 15-0 votes were:

Bill No. 31-0094 – “The Second Chance For Jobs and Education After A Misdemeanor Conviction Act” which allows people convicted of misdemeanors to file a petition to appeal for expungement of the conviction after waiting for a certain period of time after their release from prison based on how much time they served. The shorter the time in prison, the shorter the waiting period before the petition can legally be filed. The bill was sponsored by Sen. Nereida “Nellie” Rivera-O’Reilly and co-sponsored by Sen. Sammuel Sanes.

Bill No. 31-0030 – “The Good Samaritan Law” which extends immunity to all people who assist in health emergencies. If the bill becomes law it allows people other than first responders to be granted immunity from liability. The bill was sponsored by Sen. Sammuel Sanes.

Bill No. 31-0017 – The act relates to the development of marine tourism in the Virgin Islands. If the bill is signed into law by the governor, it would require the Tourism Department to hire employees to develop a marine tourism plan and promote marine tourism based on the availability of funds. The bill was sponsored by Sen. Janette Millin Young and co-sponsored by Sens. Kurt Vialet and Clifford Graham.

Bill No. 31-0055 – The act mandates that the Agriculture Department conduct a feasibility study for establishing a plant for processing local fruits, vegetables and other agricultural products. If the bill is signed into law, it would establish a processing plant on St. Croix and a satellite plant on St. Thomas. The bill was sponsored by Sen. Myron Jackson and co-sponsored by Sen. Kurt Vialet.

Bill No. 31-0067 – The act allows residential net metering electrical customers with less than 10-kilowatt solar power systems to sell surplus power back to the Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority. If signed into law by the governor, it would allow WAPA to get maximum full-price net metering payments after 2025. The bill was sponsored by Sen. Sammuel Sanes.

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John McCarthy
John McCarthy has been reporting on the Virgin Islands on television, in newspapers, on the radio and on the internet since 1989. Please send your comments, questions and news tips to [email protected]

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