The Governor appoints the Secretary of Revenue with the advice and consent of the Senate to serve at the will and pleasure of the Governor. The secretary’s salary is set by statute at $95,000 per year.
The Department of Revenue, previously known as the Department of Tax and Revenue, was created by the 1989 Legislature and combined the following departments and agencies under the leadership of the secretary: Alcohol Beverage Control Commissioner, Division of Banking, Board of Banking and Financial Institutions, Lending and Credit Rate Board, Insurance Commissioner, State Lottery, Racing Commission and State Tax Division. The department began operations on July 1, 1989.
On June 11, 2004, legislation took effect reorganizing the department and changing its name to the Department of Revenue. The secretary then became the director of the state budget and an ex-officio member of the Council for Finance and Administration. The State Budget Office was moved from the Department of Administration to the Department of Revenue and the State Athletic and the Municipal Bond commissions part of the department.
The department, through its agencies, does the following:
- Alcohol Beverage Control Administration licenses manufacturers and sellers of beer, wine and liquor in West Virginia and regulates the sale of these products. The ABCA Commissioner also operates the state liquor warehouse.
- Division of Banking regulates and supervises state banking institutions, industrial banks, industrial loan companies, credit unions, supervised lenders and other financial institutions, which have been or may be placed under its supervision.
- The Offices of the Insurance Commissioner collect insurance premium taxes, as well as regulate and oversee the insurance industry within the state, including, but not limited to, workers’ compensation, hospital service corporations, dental service corporations, medical service corporations, other health service corporations, health maintenance organizations and other entities, which by statute are under the jurisdiction of the Insurance Commissioner.
- Lottery Commission and State Lottery Office operate the state lottery, including racetrack video lottery and limited video lottery.
- Municipal Bond Commission serves as fiscal agent for all issuers of general obligation bonds issued by West Virginia counties, county boards of education and municipalities and by other government entities when the commission is specifically named as the fiscal agent by statute.
- Office of Tax Appeals hears contested tax cases from the State Tax Division.
- State Athletic Commission regulates all amateur, professional, and semiprofessional boxing, sparring matches and exhibitions, and any professional mixed martial arts contests, matches and exhibitions, or any form thereof, to be promoted, conducted, held or given within the state.
- Under supervision of the Governor and through the State Budget Office, the prepares the Governor’s annual budget for state departments, agencies, boards, commissions and offices, including state-operated institutions of higher education. The State Budget Office administers the budget after it is passed by the Legislature.
- The State Tax Division, also called the State Tax Department, administers, collects and enforces various state taxes including the beer barrel tax, the business and occupation tax, the business franchise tax, the cigarette tax, the consumers sales and service tax, the corporation license tax, the corporation net income tax, the estate tax, the gasoline and special fuels tax, the health care provider tax, the motor carrier road tax, the personal income tax, the severance tax, the soft drinks tax, the telecommunication tax and the wine liter tax. The agency also appraises industrial and natural resource properties throughout the state for ad valorem property tax purposes, supervises the work of county assessors, prepares for the Board of Public Works tentative ad valorem property tax assessments for all public utilities operating within the state, and issues permits for and regulates charitable bingo occasions and charitable raffles held in the state.
- West Virginia Racing Commission regulates greyhound and horse racing and pari-mutuel wagering at the state’s four pari-mutuel racetracks. It also regulates the sending and receiving of simulcast races and pari-mutuel wagering on simulcast races in the state.