A second Senate committee has endorsed adding an intermediate appeals court to West Virginia's judicial system.
The three-judge court would hear both criminal and civil cases under the version advanced Monday by the Senate Finance Committee. It heads to the full Senate.
The court would handle appeals filed with the state Supreme Court that the justices decide not to consider. Its decisions would set legal precedent and could be appealed to the Supreme Court.
The governor would appoint the three judges, nominated by a selection committee.
A commission that studied West Virginia's judiciary recommended an intermediate appeals court in 2009. Critics question the potential cost, and also cite how the Supreme Court revamped its appeals process last year.