CHARLESTON, W.VA. — West Virginia voters handed Gov. Gaston Caperton (D) an overwhelming defeat on three constitutional amendments he said would complete his reorganization of state government. One of the amendments would have eliminated three statewide elected offices - secretary of state, treasurer, and agriculture commissioner - and placed their duties under the governor's control.
The second amendment would have given the governor greater authority over the state schools. The third would have allowed cities and counties to merge or choose new forms of government.