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UPDATE: W.Va. House Elects Miley as New Speaker

By: WSAZ & WV MetroNews Email
By: WSAZ & WV MetroNews Email

UPDATE 6/18/13 @ 12:50 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- Democrat Tim Miley is the new speaker of West Virginia's House of Delegates.

The Harrison County lawyer was elected during a brief special session Tuesday.

Miley earlier won the backing of rival candidate and Finance Chair Harry Keith White.

House Republicans nominated Minority Leader Tim Armstead of Kanawha County.

The Democrats' majority is slim, at 54 of 100 seats. Democratic Delegate Ryan Ferns of Ohio County voted for Armstead. But three GOP delegates were absent.

Miley succeeds Rick Thompson, who resigned the Legislature to join Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin's Cabinet.

The Wayne County Democrat stepped down over the weekend to become secretary of Veterans' Assistance. Tomblin appointed retired banker Timothy Kinsey on Tuesday to Thompson's House seat.

Miley will preside until the end of 2014.



UPDATE 6/18/13 @ 10:45 a.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A former longtime Wayne County banker is the newest member of West Virginia's House of Delegates.

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin's office announced Tuesday that he's appointed Timothy Kinsey to the seat vacated by former Speaker Rick Thompson.

Thompson resigned to join Tomblin's Cabinet as Veterans' Assistance secretary. The House is convening Tuesday to elect a new speaker.

The 64-year-old Kinsey is a Democrat and recently retired as president of United National Bank for the Cabell and Wayne county region.

The Marshall University graduate spent more than a quarter-century in banking. Kinsey's wife, Christie, is a financial adviser and a Republican who's contributed both to the GOP and Democrats.

Timothy Kinsey will serve out the remaining term for Thompson's seat, which is up again for election in 2014.

A special session starts Tuesday afternoon to choose Thompson's replacement for Speaker of the House.



UPDATE 6/18/13 @ 8:30 a.m.
WAYNE, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Three people have been nominated to the fill the House of Delegates seat vacated by Rick Thompson.

Thompson announced last month he was resigning from the House to become the Secretary of Veteran’s Assistance in Governor Earl Ray Tomblin’s administration.

Thompson had served Wayne County in the House since 2000 and was elected House Speaker in 2007.

Monday night, the Wayne County Democratic Executive committee nominated Timothy Kinsey, Kenneth Hicks and Matthew McComas to fill Thompson’s 19th District seat. Tomblin is expected to announce his choice Tuesday morning.

The W.Va. House of Delegates will meet in special session Tuesday to elect a new speaker.

Judiciary Chairman Tim Miley is the Democrat's likely nominee. The Harrison County lawyer won the backing of rival candidate and Finance Chair Harry Keith White last week.

House Republicans are expected to support Minority Leader Tim Armstead of Kanawha County.

The Democrat's majority is slim, as they hold 54 of 100 seats. Election gains last year increased the GOP's share of the chamber.

The next speaker would preside until the end of 2014.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the latest information.



UPDATE 6/17/13 @ 12:45 p.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Governor Earl Ray Tomblin has called the House of Delegates into Special Session this week.

Tomblin issued a proclamation Monday for the session to begin at noon on Tuesday, June 18.

The session was called to fill the vacancy in the office of the Speaker of the House of Delegates.

Former Speaker Rick Thompson stepped down last month when he was appointed as the Cabinet Secretary of the Department of Veterans Assistance.

Thompson was elected to the State Legislature in 2000 and has served as Speaker of the House since 2007. Thompson is a life member of American Legion Post 93, in Kenova, West Virginia.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the latest information.



UPDATE 5/16/13 11:23 a.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Speaker Rick Thompson has been appointed as the Cabinet Secretarty of the Department of Veterans Assistance.

According to a release from Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin, Secretary Keith Gwinn will step down mid-June due to health concerns. Thompson's appointment will be effective following Gwinn's retirement.

"I'm pleased Speaker Thompson has accepted this opportunity to serve our state's veterans. Throughout the years, he has demonstrated a strong commitment to the people of our state, especially our veterans. This past session Speaker Thompson pushed legislation, which will provide advocates for our veteran students. He also worked to ensure policies are put into place to make sure our veterans are provided flexibility to complete their courses following a call to active duty."

Thompson was elected to the State Legislature in 2000 and has served as Speaker of the House since 2007. Thompson is a life member of American Legion Post 93, in Kenova, W.Va.

"I've enjoyed serving our state as a legislator and as Speaker of the House. Throughout my years in public service, I've championed for our veterans-supporting a number of bills that honor and further assist these brave men and women," Speaker Thompson said. "I look forward to working with the staff at our state's veterans' facilities, collaborating with our many veterans organizations across the state as well as ensuring we continue to provide support to the men and women who have served our state and nation. Our state's veterans exemplify our proud history of service and I'm honored for this opportunity to serve them."

"I want to take this opportunity to thank Secretary Gwinn, our first Secretary of The Department of Veterans Assistance, for his service to our state and his enthusiastic commitment to our veterans," Gov. Tomblin said. "Secretary Gwinn accomplished much during his tenure, including his role in helping to secure the largest federal grant for a state veteran's cemetery. I'm truly grateful for his service."

Our media partner, WV MetroNews, says the surprise announcement will set off a scramble for the critical leadership position in the House. Several candidates for the position come to mind immediately: House Majority Leader Brent Boggs, Finance Committee Chairman Harry Keith White, Judiciary Chairman Tim Miley and Delegate Doug Skaff.

Governor Tomblin will have ten days following Thompson’s resignation on June 15 to call a special session so the House can elect a new Speaker.



ORIGINAL STORY
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WVMetroNews) -- Several Democratic sources have confirmed for our media partner, WV MetroNews that House Speaker Rick Thompson is going to resign his seat and accept a new position in the Tomblin administration as cabinet secretary of the state Department of Veterans Assistance.

Thompson, a Democrat, has been speaker for seven years and a member of the state House of Delegates since 2000.

This surprise announcement will set off a scramble for the critical leadership position in the House. Several candidates for the position come to mind immediately: House Majority Leader Brent Boggs, Finance Committee Chairman Harry Keith White, Judiciary Chairman Tim Miley and Delegate Doug Skaff.

Thompson is a lawyer by trade, but he essentially shut down his law office in his home county of Wayne a couple of years ago when he ran unsuccessfully for the Democratic nomination for Governor. He has been contemplating a career change since then and now this position has been offered to him and he has accepted.

Thompson, who is a military veteran, is expected to leave his House seat next month to accept the new position. The current Secretary of Veterans Assistance, Keith Gwinn, is planning to retire.

Governor Tomblin will have ten days following Thompson’s resignation on June 15 to call a special session so the House can elect a new Speaker.


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