April 5, 2002

Click on the title of the story and then use your back button to return here

follow ups
The Chafin Report
A Homeowners Guide To Onsite System Regulations
When Will It End ?
Chatter 2
CLENDENIN, Our Southern Border Colony


     How will the town cope with rising costs? What happens if the town of Clay gets out of the water treatment business, their chief source of income? What about police protection, street cleaning, sidewalk repair and the like? For a first hand update on the town of Clay, Mayor Arthur Jarrett was interviewed April 3, excerpts from that discussion follow.
What are your priorities as Mayor? Jarrett,
@ My priorities.... to keep the town, to keep the water plant, and to get the town back on its feet.@
     What has to happen for the town to be financially sound? Jarrett,
@ Rather than do this all on my own, I need some help from Council members. .... other than just come to a meeting and set there and run their jaw.. they need to get out and help. And if we keep the water plant, that would give us some employment, money flowing, and there is some grants out there we can get I think. There has got to be some out there someplace some how. I have some people that are supposed to help me on that.@ Over the years, the town=s water plant has generated much needed revenue and that revenue has been used for many municipal projects.
     Currently, the town is behind in sewer plant loan payments but the Mayor feels that will be corrected this month. As to the general state of the finances in Clay, Jarrett,
@ Fair, we=re in fair shape .@ Down the road is another matter. According to the Mayor, major expenditures will be needed shortly. Jarrett.@ Not in the month or so, but down the road the pumps for the Maysel booster station, we=ve got to update them, and fence around the water tanks.@ As for the need to replace or repair the town=s backhoe and trucks, A The backhoe is in good shape, one truck is in good shape and the other one is rustin= out, the blue one.@
     During the regime of resigned mayor Joyce Gibson, controversy surfaced over whether the town should give away the existing water plant and purchase water from a proposed regional plant. Over the last 18 months council has passed ordinances on both sides of the issue . With the controversy still in full force, council decided April 2 to allow the residents to decide the fate of both the water and the sewer plant during an election to be held sometime this summer. On the ballot will be the question to give away both plants to a soon to be formed regional PSD. Full details of the stormy council vote are elsewhere in this edition.
So what will Mayor Jarrett tell his constituents if asked? Jarrett,
@ If we can get the money to meet the new standards, we need to keep it.@ Jarrett was referring to new federal clean water standards that are currently proposed and the need for the town to upgrade the aging water plant to meet the new higher clean water regulations.
     As for what the Mayor will tell the folks on selling off the new high technology sewer plant,
@ I wasn=t on the Council then and I wasn=t the mayor....You=ve been to those meetings. Who all was on that Council?@ Jarrett thought back on the time when Council Ok’ed the construction of the high tech sewer plant. Names like Tim Butcher, Dave Derby, Burkhamer, Okey Burroughs, Wanda Chambers, Betty Murphy, Jeff Krauklis, Jim Dawson were mentioned. Jarrett, A Mainly Board of Education people. Am I right???? Mainly, Board of Education people. They wanted the sewer plant [for the high school].@
     Since going into service three years ago, two major issues have mired the worth of the modern treatment facility. During this time period there have been many equipment failures. Council has laid the blame for the many breakdowns on the designers, Chapman Technical. Also contentious are the original operation cost estimates from just 5 years ago. Since going on line, the sewer plant has operated in the red and just three months ago lagging income projections required an upwards of 260% rate increase just to make loan payments on the gazillion dollar plant. Can the log factory break even and not be a financial boat anchor for the town? Jarrett said “Yes, if we can get a grant or two to extend the customers. We can probably cut the costs if we had more customers. It is hard to pay for that place with 280 or so customers. 300 or so paying for the whole place. Of course the Board of Education has the biggest bill there is . But, they wanted it, that
=s my understanding…”
     Many in the community feel that locals will not approve of the selling of the long paid for water plant with the likelihood of much higher water rates in the offing when the town buys water from a costly regional water plant. Should the voters opt to get out of the income generating water business, what would the town do to stay afloat? Jarrett,
@ What can we do other than a Business and Occupation tax? No one wants that. What else is there? I don=t know of anything other than B&O. We would have to put the B&O on. They tried this once before, for those $100,000 and up, which was not going to affect 8 or 10 businesses. Well.... that=s not going to help much. And that is going to put the burden on 8 or 10 people! That=s no good.@ Jarrett said the B&O tax he would propose would be applied across the board to everybody.
Can the town make it without the water and sewer plant? Jarrett,
@ No, its got approximately $20,000.00 coming in... coal severance, parking meters, taxes, licenses, and whatever. You got to pay the light bill... What do you do? Where do you get money from then?? How would you fix sidewalks?”
     Mayor Arthur Jarrett has been on the job since January 2 of this year. As for the Mayor
=s working relationship with Town Council, he explained it was good ,@ except for two.@ As to mending fences, A I can mend one and as for the other one ....@ Jarrett explained that just last year one council member suggested that during the dire financial straits the town should just shut the water off, to close down the water plant. Jarrett,@ Now, I=m not too smart, but any boiled water is better than that. That is what he suggested.@
     In the near future, whether the town stays in the water and sewer business or not, water usage will be in the news. Since the WV Public Service Commission forced council to sell water to Clay Roane PSD four months ago, the Maysel booster pump has worked nearly 24 hours per day. Additionally, the Maysel storage tank has remained low. At issue is the need for fire suppression and with spring on the way, the use of water to fill pools and water gardens. Jarrett said a major Clay Roane leak was repaired last week but notices to curtail water usage may be needed.
Jarrett said that the town now has a very low water loss rate of less than 8%. He said that the big master meters do not catch the low flow times which shows up as a water loss.
AWe have some dead meters too,@ according to Jarrett. Last month the town ordered 50 new house meters and this month 80 more have been ordered.
     In closing, Jarrett commented,
A The water finances are alright as of right now and the sewer is starting to take care of itself, too. I am supposed to have a new meter maid coming by Friday to start running meters again. We=ve now got a town cop that is working a few hours a week. That will maybe help some of those meters from getting robbed.... some boys came in there [the historic Henry Clay Hotel] with nickels, dimes and quarters,,,, I asked them,=where did you get them at?=. They never answered, they just grinned. Things are looking better if I can get some help. It=s hard to work on something on your own when you haven=t been there long. If you bring a car into me, I can fix it for you. But if you bring that plant into me , I can=t fix it. You know what I mean? I=m a learner!@

follow ups

*Last edition had some problems. Several customers called to say that some of the pages were inserted in the wrong order while others commented that pages were missing entirely. We goofed, and apologize as well. We
=ll try harder this time around to get our heads out of our... well you know.
*In the March 22 edition was coverage of the State of WV vs Bentree Church of God court room action. During the hearing, Judge Jack Alsop ordered trustees and minister to stop any actions causing any harm to the real and personal property and to protect the financial records of the church until a full blown hearing can be held June 5. After the hearing, Assistant Prosecutor Barbara Schamberger commented,
A The state=s case was helped immensely by the courtesy, patience and exceptional research of Judy Moore, the County Clerk, her staff and especially Connie Workman who gave tirelessly of her time to assist the state in its case. Additionally, Suzie Legg and her entire staff were instrumental in research and assisting the state in proving elements necessary to sustain a request for a temporary injunction. These public servants did an outstanding job in enabling the people of Clay County to present its case before Judge Jack Alsop and I owe them a personal >Thank you= from the bottom of my heart.@

??? DID YOU KNOW ???

  1. In 1990, 26 percent of children in West Virginia lived in house-holds headed by a high school dropout. By 2000 only 20 percent did.
  2. Fifty percent of the US population, and 100 percent in many rural areas, rely on ground water to drink.
  3. After 80 years, original symbols of West Virginia’s 4H will not be seen, because the American Indian is offended.
  4. Postage stamps will cost three more cents in July.
  5. Employee theft at retail stores nationwide climbed to $14.9 billion in 2000.
  6. More than 1 million boxes of Kraft macaroni and cheese are sold every day.
  7. Charleston Area Medical Center performs about 2,500 open-heart surgeries a year.
  8. The 1991 Toyota Camry was the most stolen vehicle for the fifth straight year on an annual list that monitors trends in auto theft.
  9. Manufacturing productivity in West Virginia held even between 1999 and 2000, while it increased nationally by about 11 %.
  10. 50 of the 76 West Virginia University Medical students who graduate this spring have chosen to leave the state for their “residencies”.
  11. There are only 612 Federal Inspectors for the coal mines in 25 states.
  12. An asteroid large enough to demolish Orlando, Florida passed within 288,000 miles of earth without being noticed by astronomers until 4 days later.
  13. A study in The American Medical Association Journal, says children who ride in the rear seat of compact extended cab pickups are 5 times as likely to be injured in a crash as children riding in the back seat of other vehicles.
  14. Clay County has one registered sex offender for every 544 residents.
  15. The number of licensed motorcycles rose from 17,500 in 1992 to 27,300 in 2001
  16. 70 percent of Americans in jail on drug charges are black.
  17. Americans eat more than 600 million pounds of peanuts and 700 million pounds of peanut butter each year.
  18. The FBI wants 930 more agents by Sept. 30, 2002.
  19. According to the General Education Development Testing Service’s most recent survey 512,000 adults worldwide received equivalency diplomas in 2000.
  20. Our faith in the present dies out long before our faith in the future.


By Melissa Postelwait

=s right, AFRAID. They are afraid that if they actually defend the law that it might upset the rest of the crookedness in the county. And we shouldn=t expect them to do that, should we? After all, they are just our elected leadership, wouldn=t want them to actually obey the law. It would be like asking them to care about the county and citizens that they represent, it just isn=t what they were elected for.
      Would you like to know what they were elected for? Well according to my
Aeye witness source@ here is the list of rules that they go by:
1. Never, and I mean never, tell the truth. Avoid it at all cost, if you don
=t people will expect something from you.
2. Always give other
ACounty Leaders@ anything they want. Never give to those who can=t help finance your next election.
3. Even if you know the answer to a question, always say “I have to refer that to my attorney, and I will get back with you.” This will avoid telling the truth and also keep you from helping the little people.
4. Never have one-on-one conversations. Stay within a group as much as possible. That way you can never be held accountable for anything you might say, you can always just blame it on someone else that was in the group.
5. Always appoint members of the county
=s various boards from the list attached to these rules. They have been pre-selected and will do whatever they are told, they never tell the truth, and they all can help finance your next election.
6. If you are ever put on the spot for anything, just say,
AI will take that under consideration.@ Of course, you aren=t really going to do anything, but it will keep the ones that come to challenge you at bay , for a little while at least.
7. Never give public speeches, you may be put in a spot that you would have to tell the truth, or make promises that you don
=t want to keep. Avoid this at any expense. If you promise something and don=t deliver, you will have to buy more votes next election term.
8. Always tell people that there is a record of any money received and that it will be placed in the record book. However you must DESTROY the record immediately. Later on if someone needs it just say that it was in the records, but someone must have stolen it. This will be helpful if someone discovers that money is missing.
9. Never attend a meeting when on the agenda someone says that they can prove laws have been violated and they want someone removed from a board for it. It is always best to call in sick or have a doctor
=s appointment. You do not want the ones that help fund your election to get upset with you. Remember these people have been pre-selected-they will be able to cover up whatever it is.
10. And finally, NEVER give the citizens what they want or deserve. If you do, then what are you going to promise your next election?
  1. Editor=s Note: Ms Postelwait has been leading the charge to get water service into the Punkin Ridge area of Clay County. Postelwait has also called for the removal of the Clay Roane PSD board members after finding out about very questionable practices by the board over who gets water service in the Clay Roane PSD service area.

    CLARKE Curmudgeon=s Corner

     There is an old German folk song entitled Die Gedanken Sind Frei. Translated loosely, the words mean: AThoughts Are Free.@ Woe betide the citizen during the reign of Adolph Hitler, the man Winston Churchill called a Abloodthirsty guttersnipe@, who was heard doing that song. The danger of speaking freely in this republic is no problem: so we are told. After all, we have our beloved first amendment. But the trauma of September 11 has spawned an orgy of super patriotism that seems to have created a revival of the Athought police@ British writer George Orwell warned us about in 1984.
     A few weeks ago, in a moment of almost indescribable arrogance, Ari Fleischer, the President
=s spokesman, proclaimed on national TV: AAmericans had better watch out what they say.@ Surprisingly, there was no national outcry over this preposterous statement. The media, which seems to have taken on the task of cheerleading for the administration, has remained strangely silent on what should have been a burning issue for liberal and conservative alike. Fleischer, in a power mad moment attempted to sound the death knell of free speech. One of the few notable exceptions to Fleischer=s warning was the indomitable Maureen Dowd, columnist for the New York Times, who observed that she did not need the President=s lackey to teach her about patriotism.
     As the old song has it,
AThe beat goes on.@ Last week Tom Daschle, Senate majority leader, had the audacity to say: A...the administration needs to provide lawmakers with a clearer understanding of where the war on terrorism is headed.@ Some fuzzy-headed liberals might consider Daschle=s remark voice of reason. The theory that the congress was created as a check on potentially excessive executive power seems to have been lost on such as Trent Lott, former head cheerleader at the University of Mississippi who, playing to the gallery and the media, bellowed: AHow dare he?@ Furious as he was, Lott, whose hairdo seems to have been welded to his skull, was left with no strand out of place. One can almost imagine quiet mutterings of Atraitor!@ not quite echoing about the chamber. At the risk of appearing cynical it might be mentioned that the intended function of congress - to provide the checks and balances crucial to a democracy - has currently been abandoned because of the fear of retribution in the coming election. It may be a sign of the times that the only true immorality in politics is not to be reelected. At the moment the dominant hue and cry across the land seems to be that dissent is treason. Even the Attorney General, top cop John Ashcroft, has joined in the voices of suppression, telling Americans that those who question the administration are guilty of giving aid and comfort to the terrorists. If the nation accepts this kind of message from the powerful who seem determined to suspend the constitution, war or no war, we may be forced to live with the kind of government we deserve.
     As a brief comment on another delicate subject, it is surprising that, among all the media coverage of the tragic death of Danny Pearl no commentator has had the courage to point out how stupid it was for the Wall Street Journal to send an American Jewish correspondent to one of the most militant Islamic countries on this planetPakistan
    . AIf this be treason, make the most of it.@- Patrick Henry
      Editor=s Note: Bob Clarke received his B.A. and M.A. at Southern Illinois University and PH.D. at the University of Wisconsin. He taught English literature for 39 years, the last 20 at WVU in Morgantown. Dr. Clarke resides in Buckhannon, WV.


      by EB Goode
      Dear friends & loved ones!
      A very Happy Easter to ya all!!! I was thinking of what Easter means to me & this started coming: My life... Easter? We know it's JESUS, We know it's You Lord. THANK YOU JESUS for Everlasting Life & for Living in Love.....You are the Personification of the Fathers Love & Mercy...and even Justice!
      Personally, I met You, that day....it was Your time for me. I saw You, as that humble Sunday-school teacher read from Your Gospel. Thanks My Lord for the privileged opportunity!!!
      I was 13 years old, but I saw the Love, as You Healed the down-trodden & encouraged the needy.......Such Irresistible Power... You cared for them & I needed You too. So, I followed the church-men in that Prayer & YOU came into My Life, never to leave. THANK YOU LORD!
      I was young, the church, after that, was just somewhere to go to take my girl-friend once in a while to show we where trying to be good. I don't remember learning much about You from them.....but maybe I did, some. And You were in me now with Your Spirit of Love...the Answer for All man-kind! And I wasn't ready to know it, yet! Onward, we went, You were with Me, but I did not really know or care that much, because, many distractions & growing & lessons were there.
      School, peers, friends, enemies, challenges, wants, desires, parents, society, toys, the world . I did see pictures of the poor & needy. I must have remembered somewhere back in my mind, that picture of the poor & needy that You healed, but how did I fit in? Idealisms, high-school, sports, girl-friends, materialism, surfing, hippies, the war in a poor land, killing, suffering,
      answers-answers, drugs, spiritual enlightenment, visions.
      I started sensing the need for peace, truth & purpose! I began to see, that LOVE was not a standard in this world. Peace was often mentioned, but, where & how? Politics, religion, employment, time. I was growing by trial & error, by brokenness, by pleasure, by concern & by a need for power to help make a difference!
      Finally, I knew what insanity could be. I had gotten near the edge of uselessness, of despair , prison, limits, laws & ways out! I had to fight, both mentally &,physically & more! But Love was the answer still! Lord, in my darkest most insane hour, You took me on a trip. You gave me, again, supernatural miraculous evidence of YOU. Of Your Realities beyond this life! The visions were clarified in Your Words, and there You taught me...... TO BE.......................A Disciple !!!!
      So, this is my Resurrection......& I look forward, now, daily to YOUR LIFE! YOU, LORD JESUS of LOVE, ARE the RESURRECTION. YOU ARE EASTER! THANK YOU JESUS & may we keep going until ALL,,, who will, Be Resurrected into YOUR NEW HEAVEN & EARTH (RV 21&22) HALELUJAH.. HE IS RISEN & WE SHALL OVERCOME & RISE ABOVE..NOW & FOREVER!!!
          Love you all,
            Eric B. ( Ivan) Goode

      Editor’s note: Mr. Goode is a missionary currently serving in Texas near the Mexican border.


      Dear Governor Wise,
             I have been in contact with you several times before concerning the water issue here in Procious. Recently I uncovered evidence that the Clay-Roane PSD Board members had violated several rules and regulations set forth in the WV State Code and also the rules set forth by the WV Public Service Commission. On March 27, 2002 I attended the Clay County Commissioner's meeting to ask them to petition the Circuit Court of Clay County for the removal of the offensive board members. On that date they asked for the advice of the Clay County Prosecuting Attorney, which recommended that they hold a public hearing to allow due process to take place. I agree with that, I want them to hold a public hearing that will allow us citizens to confront the guilty parties and also allow for justice to be served. And I also think that if enough evidence is presented that they should take further action to remove the guilty members. But as of today, they have not acted on anything.
      So I am asking for your help once again. Would you please call the Clay County Commissioners on our behalf and ask them to hold the public hearing? The County Commissioner's names and phone numbers, along with their clerk's name and number, is listed below.
      Again, thank you for any support you can offer.
          Sincerely, Melissa Postelwait
              P.O. Box 182, Procious, WV 25164 (304) 587-4836
      Judy Moore, Clerk: 587-4259
      Matthew Bragg, Commission President: 587-2226
      James Sams, Commissioner: 548-5031
      Timothy Butcher, Commissioner: 587-7290

      The Chafin Report
      by Jim Chafin
           ATrust us - we=ll take good care of your loved one.@
           The day is progressing in a routine manner. It has been a three hour drive from Williamson to Oak Hill, and I arrive at the Afacility@ a little after eight in the morning. I stopped at a local grocery to purchase food items, and at a clothing outlet to buy a sweater and shoes for Ruby Ruth. I must keep several items of clothing in our car just in case she needs anything, which always seems to be the case. Personal items seem to be swallowed up and never found in that communal community.
           I enter the building through the front entrance, and walk through the reception area; through the double doors that open into a long corridor. I look to my right, searching amidst the sea of faces for a glimpse of my beloved and, not finding her, I turned to my left and walked towards the work station - past the many rooms that open into the community area. I hear a loud voice emanating from one of those rooms; there seems to be a resident in need of service. The voice gets louder:
      AHelp me - somebody, please help me!@ I look into the room, my eyes have to adjust to the darkness, but in the front bed there is a lady trying to get from her bed to a chair. Seeing no one to help her, I enter the room and assist her very unsteady feet to the chair. She asks for water and there is none in her pitcher, so I continue on to the work station and speak to someone behind the counter - I tell her that the lady is in need of assistance and is asking for water. She nods in the affirmative and says AOK@ but she turns around and continues whatever she was doing at the time. Meanwhile, the lady down the hall is still calling for help. The water and ice are in a room behind a door with a sign saying ANo Admittance - Employees Only@, so I am not at liberty to help the person myself.
           Looking further down the hallway I see Ruby Ruth walking in my direction with her arms outstretched. She falls into my arms and sobs quietly. This is the beginning of another day - one that I have come to accept as normal in this long term
      Acare@ facility. Ruby Ruth and I adjourn to the front lounge for some quiet time and conversation. It=s a cold day outside, about 20 degrees, and it is rather chilly inside the building. Ruby has on only a short sleeved blouse, socks, and no shoes. I ask her: ARuby, aren=t you cold?@ And she replies, AYes, I am.@ So, we move back to her room in search of shoes and a sweater; finding none, I return to our car and retrieve those newly purchased items, and she puts them on. In the months to follow this scenario will be repeated many times, and the cost is staggering. ALost@ items are seldom, if ever, found - it=s like throwing money down a bottomless pit. In West Virginia, there are more than 26,000 people who are living under such circumstances; multiply that by 50, and a picture of the enormity of the problem emerges.
           Ruby refuses to eat most days unless I am with her, so I arrive early and stay late - through all the meals, most of which she cannot eat because two sets of teeth have been
      Alost@. We spend the day enjoying each others company, but all too soon the day is gone and Ruby Ruth begins to fret. She knows that I must leave and she will be alone. Eventually, she permits me to leave for home. After the drive home I am completely exhausted and I fall into bed without supper. I must rest because four A.M. arrives quickly and I shall be at my beloved=s side by early morning. America, remove these bonds and set the captives free!!
      =s note: In our next issue Mr. Chafin will conclude this series of articles on life within our long term care facilities and the great need to demand higher standards of care for the elderly and disabled who must live in them.


           The lead story in the last edition was the announcement of the WV Mental Health Consumer=s Association office on Main Street. For many, the opening of the Adrop center@ will be a welcome addition to services currently provided by other already established and operating in the community. Some have asked, Who is WV Mental Health Consumer=s Association (WVMHCA)?
           To answer that, a little background work has been done. The following info comes from public records of the organization and is based on the non profit
      =s most current IRS reports.
           WVMHCA home office is 1036 Quarrier Street in Charleston and can be reached at 304 345-7312. With direct support totaling $30,738.00, Government grants of $ 923,903.00, program service revenue of $87,957.00, total revenue total $1,042,598.00. Net assets include: excess from previous year-$96,982.; net assets from beginning of the year- $21,983.00 totaling $118,964.00. In 1995 total grants and gifts totaled $289,301.; in 1996 grants totaled $291,316.00;1997 - $329,047.; and, 1998 - $602,076.00.
      As far as pay outs are concerned, we found the following: Compensation for officers -$44,424.00; other salary and wages - $268,930.00; employee benefits - $31,358.00; legal fees -$4,121.00; supplies - $38,030.00; printing and publications - $27,443.00; and get this one, conferences and conventions - $302,995.00. Total pay outs were $ 945,616.00.
           So what do they do? According to the records,
      @provide peer counseling services via telephone lines, conferences, and publication and promote rights, representation, and respect of mental health consumers.@ Total pay outs for those services are $762,031.00.
      =s Director is Larry Belcher who is paid $44,424.00. Board members are: President Elliot Birckhead; Vice President Renee Strongfellow; Treasurer Vincent Thomas; and Board members : Nancy Allison Schmitt, Dorothy Nichols, Ron Peck, Norm Hall, Jack Strongfellow, Patty Anne Schoen, Leslie Reedy, Angela Ferrari, John Russell, Kim Murphy and Joe Degan.
      The Clay Center is scheduled to open May 1.


      The Clay County Board of Education met Tuesday, April 2, at the administrative office building for the first of their twice monthly meetings. All members present-R.B. Legg Jr. (president), Gene King, Fran King, Scott Legg, and David Pierson Jr.
              After praying Legg called the meeting to order and the following agenda items were approved with little or no discussion: the agenda, previous meeting minutes, payment of current bills, employment of C. Don Moore as Clerk-of-the-Works for the upcoming roofing replacements at Clay County High School (CCHS) and Clay Elementary, Tina Burdette’s resignation as teacher of Family and Consumer Science effective August 2002, transfer of Charlotte Fitzwater to full time Cook II at CCHS successful bid, transfer of Jennifer Koch to half time Cook II at Clay Middle (CMS) successful bid, transfer of Henry Mullins to Social Studies Teacher at CCHS successful bid, employment of Anita Holcomb as half time Cook at Ivydale Elementary successful bid, transfer of Anita Stephenson to English/Language Arts Teacher at CCHS successful bid (James Browning’s one year contract ended), transfer of Brian Collins to LD Special Education Teacher at CMS successful bid (new position required due to student need), transfer of Rick Young to LD Special Education Teacher at CCHS successful bid.
              Overnight trips were approved for CCHS students to travel to Martinsburg, WV for State VICA competition April 18-21, and for the HOSA competition at the University of Charleston April 26 and 27. An overnight/out of state trip was approved for CMS band students to go to Kennywood Park in Pittsburgh, PA May 11 and 12. Transportation will be provided for 4-H campers going to Grandview State Park the week of June 10th.
              Textbooks for English/Language Arts, Grammar, Composition, Handwriting, Speech, Journalism, Foreign Language, and Vocational Agriculture were approved as recommended by the textbook committee.
              Apparently added to the agenda late, Board awarded the roofing jobs to be done at Clay Elementary and CCHS to Tri State Roofing and Sheet Metals as the successful low bids-$70,600 and $310,843. Superintendent Jerry Linkinogger told the Board the bids were opened earlier in the day, and that the School Building Authority (SBA), which is providing the funds for the projects, liked the company.
              Two hearings were conducted to determine the status of two CMS students. Both were conducted in executive session-the first due to no parent appearing for the hearing and at the request of members Pierson and Scott Legg, both wanting further discussion on the situation. Following the session Board voted to place the child in Alternative School until next year’s 2nd semester. The parents of the second child requested a closed hearing, and afterward Board placed the child in Alternative School also until 2nd semester next year.
              Last, CWEP workers Amber Adkins, Anita Truman, and Opal Duffield were approved for immediate placement. Linkinogger said all three will be placed at the board office, and asked to table the other CWEP workers listed for placement. All Motions passed unanimously.
        Linkinogger gave the Board copies of a proposed policy regarding bullying, harassment, and intimidation for them to consider adopting for next year, as will be required. And, he announced that a grant of $500,000 was awarded to Clay Elementary from the SBA to update boilers and for central air. Next meeting Tuesday , April 16 at the board office.     TK

      A Homeowners Guide To Onsite System Regulations

           If you, like a growing number of Americans, are about to realize your dream of owning a home, you are probably becoming an expert on topics such as mortgage rates, taxes, local schools, and zoning laws. When confronted by what may be the single largest investment of their lives, most people recognize the importance of being educated consumers.
      But one property issue that is often overlooked, and what is especially important for homeowners in small communities, is wastewater treatment. In rural areas, sewer hookups and centralized wastewater treatment are unavailable or impractical, so many homes rely on onsite wastewater systems, such as septic systems. Whether you plan to buy, build, sell, add to a home, or in some way alter the use of a home or property, it is important to be aware of how onsite system regulations may affect your options.
           Buyer beware! Ignorance of the law may be no excuse, but imagine how it would feel to buy land only to find out that no wastewater system can be approved for that site. Unfortunately, this problem is not uncommon and is only one reason homeowners and developers should work with local health officials before making a commitment or investment regarding the use of property. It is important to contact local health officials first to find out in advance:
      * Whether an onsite treatment system can be approved for a particular site,
      * What lot sizes and other site conditions are required for onsite systems,
      * How to apply for an onsite system permit,
      * The types of onsite systems allowed in your area,
      * Who may design, install, and inspect onsite systems,
      * Who is responsible for maintaining onsite systems, and
      * What must be done if a system malfunctions.
           Why are onsite regulations important? It seems to be a common sentiment nowadays - people feel that there is too much government intrusion and control of their lives through regulation. The need for both new and existing regulations is increasingly being called into question. Onsite system regulations certainly are no exception. They can be particularly controversial in communities that have inadequate land-use planning or zoning laws, where permit denial rates are perceived to be high, or where alternative onsite systems are not allowed. One reason onsite regulations are so important is that they can have an impact on everyone in a community. For example, regulations that specify minimum lot sizes for onsite systems can affect the process of homes and building lots and the profits of landowners and developers. These regulations also may indirectly affect growth, which has an impact on local businesses and the economic base of the whole community.
      However, the most important way that onsite regulations affect everyone is their role in protecting public health and the environment. Failing onsite systems pose a health threat to family and neighbors and degrade the quality of lakes, streams, and groundwater sources. They also reduce property values and can be expensive to repair. But over the years, it has been learned that these problems can be prevented or corrected through adequate control and supervision of the siting, design, construction, installation, and maintenance of onsite systems.
      Most of today
      =s onsite system laws and others seeking to avoid problems have evolved over time with input from health officials, engineers, soil scientists, businesses, legislators, and others seeking to avoid problems experienced in the past.
      Contributed by Pipeline newsletter, National Small Flows Clearinghouse.

      When Will It End ?

           Stop in any school this week and you will see the frantic preparations for the SAT 9 tests that will be taken by county students next week. Allegedly, the purpose of these tests is to evaluate the achievement of the students in the county and compare them to their peers across the county. The original intent was to use the results as a tool to determine where certain grades, schools, counties or states needed to strengthen their curriculum.
           Unfortunately, that noble purpose has been lost and the test is now an end in itself. Teachers and schools are unfairly evaluated on test results that are meaningless. A cottage industry has been born to provide test samples, directions on how to teach the test, workshops on how to set up the classroom to enhance test scores and seminars on how to teach the teacher to teach the test. Schools are spending an inordinate amount of time and money preparing for the test to the exclusion of all other education. The State School Board has acknowledged that these tests are not valid and will no longer be used after this year. Knowing that, why are we even putting our teachers and children through this farce this year?
           Lost in all this is the teacher and the child. Although the kids have been assured that the test is not something they will pass or fail, they can feel the pressure around them as every activity becomes a conduit toward improving their test results. Every day in every class they are reminded that the tests are coming soon and they need to do their best. The teachers are caught in the same web of pressure knowing that how well their classes do is often seen as a reflection of their teaching. No one is really benefiting from this charade and, in fact, good teachers and good kids are being hurt.
           Let’s just allow the teachers to do their jobs and refrain from this sham evaluation until a valid measure is developed.

                        Marge Bragg

      Chatter 2

           Once again I feel compelled to offer my opinion concerning a subject in The Communicator. I am referring to the
      AActivate@ column in the March 22, 2002 edition of the publication.
           As a twelve year member of the United States Air Force, my first reaction to Mr. Ted Rudow
      =s words was one of outrage. However, upon further review I began to realize that I agree with at least parts of what he has to say. War IS horrible and devastating (demonic is going a little overboard). That is why, Mr. Rudow, I and my fellow hair-brained military members will continue to wear the uniform and serve this great country., so YOU don=t have to. I will take the liberty (now there=s a word that gets thrown around a lot) of assuming that you have never served this nation in time of war. I have and have witnessed first hand the destruction that results. Don=t get me wrong, I will not dishonor those who served before me in places like Vietnam (you may have seen that on TV) or Normandy Beach by comparing my experience to the horror those heroes withstood, but I have experienced things that most civilians will not and should not.
           On the other hand, I have witnessed the joy and relief on the faces of Kuwaiti citizens when the evil empire of the United States freed them from that saint who heads up Iraq. I
      =m certain he had nothing but their best interest in mind.
           Continuing, I suppose our irresponsible government should have turned its back on the genocide that recently occurred in Somalia, Serbia or Europe during WW II. Until the U.S. stepped into those conflicts Mr. Rudow, those people were being tortured, raped and killed. How do you suppose the Lord would have viewed turning our backs on those unable to defend themselves? I don
      =t believe I=d want to face Him on judgement day and explain why I didn=t come to the aid of those less fortunate.
           Evil exists in this world and must be battled continuously. So rest assured Mr. Rudow, my fellow warmongers and I will continue to fight where we
      =re needed. Kick back in your easy chair there in California and keep complaining about us. We=ll try to make sure you keep the freedom and right to do so.
      Thank you for your time, and as always, you can reach me at
      Christopher R. Jarrett
      Technical Sergeant
      United States Air Force


           For going on 6 weeks now, the issue of preferential treatment by the Clay Roane PSD Boardsters has been the talk of the county. For those still waiting for water service, the issue is one of rage. During the March 22 County Commission meeting, a county resident stood up and asked the three blind mice for help. The Commission balked! Here=s the story.
      =s Tuesday morning, 10 am Commission President Matthew Bragg in command and assisted by elected ones, Tim Butcher and Jimmy Sams. 10 or so sat in the peanut gallery. There was the usual prayer by Sams. First up was community activist Melissa Postelwait from the Punkin Ridge area of Procious. With dogged determination Postelwait and many others in the community including Celia Coon have lead a charge to get water service into their community. To date, little more than lip service has been attained.
           For this meeting, Postelwait was not there for water service but rather to ask the Commission to remove Clay Roane PSD Chairman TG Cruickshank and members Gary Whaling and Lefty Summers. Housewife Postelwait is one of the folks that doesn
      =t like it when others get ahead of the pack, get ahead on a waiting list, and get preferential treatment because of their station in life. Postelwait made the request.
      @ On what grounds?@
           Fully prepared with documentation of the underhanded incident, copies of the state code in hand, and armed with the desire to see justice done, Postelwait made her case. Foremost was the actions of TG Cruickshank who violated WV PSC orders which specifically stated who, when, and how new customers would be added to the PSD customer base. Postelwait,
      AHe [TG] did not go by the PSC order on Mr Morris... he ignored the order and did it anyway...@ CCC read the copies provided by Postelwait and were silent. Postelwait asked that Lefty Summers be removed from office sine he had not attended the mandatory PSC Board governance training as required by law. Since Gary Whaling was aware of what Mr Cruickshanks was up to and did nothing to prevent it, she asked for his removal as well.
           How? Postelwait had found removal provisions in the WV State Code that had been used to remove other PSD members from office around the state. The process involves the CCC petitioning the Circuit Court. Additional provisions in the law allow for 5% of the customers of the PSD to petition the Court for such actions. Postelwait asked that the County Commission (CCC) call a Special Meeting and there ask the Boardster to resign. The Commissioners appeared to be squirming just a little. There was quiet for a moment. Postelwait went on to say that Cruickshank, Whaling, and Summers had broke four separate rules. Still quiet from the front. Sams and Bragg felt they should consult with their attorney before any action. Bragg said he would talk with Prosecutor Davis later that day. Sams, stepping into it,
      @ Weimer said they did nothing wrong....@ Again Postelwait explained the violations by the Board as JD Morris received the special water service treatment. Sams, A We need proof to take this to our attorney... Why hasn=t the PSC done something??@ Postelwait, ABecause they are too stupid!@ was her response. All laughed in agreement of her assessment.
           Somehow Postelwait pried enough to get Prosecutor Davis into the meeting. Davis read over the code and other documents. Davis explained that this was all new to him but one thing
      Ajumped out@ at him. Davis, A It is a question of fact, did they consistently violate the law or PSC order. Davis said the allegations had been raised and, Athe other side needs a chance to respond... Due process demands both sides must be heard...@ Davis advised the CCC to hold a Special meeting, invite the WV PSC to attend as well and if need be, subpoena the parties to be in attendance. Davis, A I suggest a public hearing.@ With Postelwait replying that TG had already confessed to the actions, the CCC sat silent.
      @ A public hearing..., it is only right...@ Davis,@ Yes, they may just resign.@ Get this... Commissioner Tim Butcher suggested that they not do anything and leave them in office since that could mess up possible DEP grant dollars which may finance the Punkin Ridge needs. Butcher, AConsider something else.@ Oh Boy readers. Understanding what Butcher was saying, Davis commented, ASort of like messing in your own mess!@ Butcher, AWith a lawsuit pending, they [DEP] may not able to work with you...@ Sams wanted out of the discussion, AWe=ll take this under advisement.@ Postelwait,@ It=s hurting us NOW!... YOU APPOINTED THEM!@
      Another person in the gallery asked that the allegations of an employee that did not read the meters for months be added to hearing agenda since the PSD had recently stated that they intended to do NO formal investigation into the matter. More squirming from the boys up front! Sams,
      A The Board members are working for you!@ Several openly laughed at that statement. Sams went on to say that if someone else was on the Board, Athings wouldn=t get done overnight..@ Commission candidate Peter Triplett spoke up and said there had been a bunch of foot dragging over the PSD=s getting audits done.
           After a recommendation of the legal advisor and after a citizen
      =s request for action the Clay County Commission decided, A to take it under advisement.@ Postelwait, AWhen will we know something?@ Bragg,@ Soon as possible.@
           Additional CCC action included the CCC placing Clerk Judy Moore on the Ad Hoc Ambulance Service Advisory Committee replacing Fran King. Although Moore felt such an appointment would be a conflict of interest for her, the CCC did it anyway. After no one showed during the recent CAEZ Census Track Election, Lynn Drake was appointed to the CAEZ Board of Directors. The Clay Commission Rep to the CAEZ, Matthew Bragg commented, “The CAEZ is not being funded by the Bush Administration... it will dry up and blow away!
      One last note. Sheriff Fields,@ do we need all those workers loitering here?@ Fields was referring to many family members of CWEP workers filling up the Courthouse on a regular basis. Fields ASome of them have kids running all over the Building!@ Judy Moore, ACan we run them out?@ Fields, A If you want me to run them out, I=m not a bit bashful.@ Sams,@ You=re here more than we are.@   AW

      CLENDENIN, Our Southern Border Colony

           Talk about things being tough here in Clayberry, wait till you hear about the town of Clendenin. There are new ANo Loitering@ signs up about everywhere. One of the more interesting ones is now posted on the town gazebo on Main Street. Let=s see now, what do you do in a gazebo but loiter? Here=s another cutey. There=s another big sign posted on the playground!
           Two weeks back, a teenager was given a citation for
      Astanding in place too long on a street@. True, true, true! Here=s another citation award to the future of America, a teenager: a ticket was given for having >no clear destination in mind@. Ever hear of that readers? It happened just south of us
           In response to town council
      =s attitude that all teenagers are hoodlums, the kids banded together and drew up a petition asking for basic civil rights and fair treatment. The plan was to present the petition to Mayor Evelyn Robertson during last week=s town council meeting. When word got out that these...these...these...Oh, even hate to say the word....teenagers were coming to the meeting, Clendenin=s 3 man police force showed up in force ready for action! So how did the Council meeting go? Did the elected ones acknowledge their haste and rescind the ordinance? Did the cops beat up on those evil teenagers?
      Nope. Council didn
      =t show. Many in the community feel that Council was so scared, they opted to stay at home.        


           Most of the leading causes of death at the turn of the century were diseases that are rarities today, primarily due to improved sanitation and availability of vaccines and medicine. The good news for West Virginia is that the #1 leading cause of death - tobacco-related diseases - can be stopped without vaccine or medicine. The bad news is that, despite increased funding from federal and state programs and private sources to educate the public on the dangers of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, we are still maintaining a high rate of tobacco use among adults and youth.
           Over one-fourth of adults in West Virginia smoke, but, more alarmingly, 39 percent of our teenagers are current smokers (U.S. rate of 28 percent) and approximately 33 percent are daily smokers, addicted before they are adults. About 6 percent of our kids reported that they had smoked a whole cigarette for the first time by the time they were eight years old; 30 percent of our kids had done so by the time they were twelve years old. The rates of smokeless tobacco use among West Virginia males are also among the highest in the nation. In fact, the state
      =s 2000 rate of 18 percent among adult males was over twice the median rate of 8 percent for the 18 states that asked questions on smokeless tobacco use, as was the difference between the state and the nation in rates among males aged 15-19 (26 percent vs. 12 percent).
           On average, 12 West Virginians die every day because they smoke cigarettes. That
      =s over 1 in 5 deaths in our state caused by smoking! Although the death certificates may list the cause of death as lung cancer, heart disease, emphysema, or asthma, Acigarette smoking@ could just as well have been listed. Those who die from smoking-related diseases come from all walks of life, all professions, all socioeconomic groups, all family situations, all religions, all ethnic backgrounds. The loss of even one of these lives is immeasurable. In dollars alone, the direct health care costs of cigarette smoking in the state of West Virginia are staggering, estimated at over half a billion dollars in 2001.
           As the Public Health Officer of West Virginia, it is my responsibility to inform you that cigarette smoking kills 4,240 of our citizens each year, causes disease in thousands of other citizens, and costs between $670 and $897 million in direct health care costs, money that can be saved if we reduce the rate of smoking. We will continue to experience these costs in lives and dollars unless we fund and implement a comprehensive plan for tobacco use prevention and cessation. Let me reiterate that, as with preventable diseases, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, but this requires a forward-thinking strategy.
           This report provides the reader with data on West Virginia
      =s tobacco use rates, deaths due to smoking, and the calculated direct health care costs of smoking in our state. While these data are estimates, they are conservative and do not take into account indirect health care costs, indirect costs from lost productivity or costs associated with secondhand smoke. We know that the use of other forms of tobacco (snuff, chewing tobacco, pipes, and cigars) is a contributing factor toward deaths from oral cancers, some of the deadliest forms of cancer. Because of the lack of published research on the economic costs attributable to each of these forms of tobacco use and the resulting disease, this report does not include these data. If you require data that are not covered in this report, please contact my office.
      Henry G. Taylor, MD, MPH
      Commissioner, West Virginia Bureau for Public Health


           It sure looks to me as if the people of this state are more like someone riding in the rumble seat than the one driving the car. That is if you aren
      =t part of the mega-patronage monster that rules West Virginia.
           This patronage monster includes state, federal, county, municipal, regional, and district employees of the government. It also includes employees of government regulated utilities, water, sewer, and electricity. The employees of the health care system also fall into this group, being regulated by the government. The largest by far of the mega-patronage workers is the education system. They are also the most helpless and dependant of the government. If you can
      =t be compliant enough to teach in your county, there are no options except to get out of your field or leave your home.
           So, when you take an objective look at the situation, it is clear that our government employees run this state. They vote candidates into office that will feed the monster. When it is fed, it grows and gains even more power. Which means that it will be even stronger in the next election. The cycle is continuing every year. The monster grows at the expense of the few that aren
      =t a part of its configuration and every year there are fewer outside the monster. All it takes to be elected or appointed to any office is to have the monster behind you.
           This monster lobbies its hand-picked officials, that create laws and regulations that are beneficial to the monster and then blame the government for making them pay themselves more or to expect less work from themselves. It is like the chicken and egg. Which came first, the bureaucratic/patronage monster or the ones that feed it?
           As usual, the rest of the nation has seen this situation, dealt with it, and moved on. Lacking behind, as we usually do, we are still trying to feed the monster with one hand while denying its existence with the other. Elected officials won
      =t face it for fear of losing popularity with its members. Appointed or hired officials won=t buck the monster for fear of losing their cushy jobs. The media doesn=t touch the monster because doing so might offend an advertiser, who doesn=t want to alienate any consumers.
           So here we go, riding a mule-train into the cyber-future. We have a government that sets its own rules, picks its own leaders, and does only what it wants to do. Expecting to hold this monster accountable is worse than a vaudeville comedy routine. If you try, all you will get is a pie in the face. The truth is that our bureaucratic patronage employees run this state and the rest of us are just riding along in the rumble seat.          
            - Don Greene


           During the March 13 meeting of the Clay Roane PSD Board of Directors, water clerk Trina Neff announced her resignation effective March 22, 2002. Neff resigned shortly after the scandalous story broke of one individual appearing to receive preferential treatment by the PSD. Since that meeting, you can now add another page in the saga of ill will by the Clay Roane PSD. Neff has been shorted on her last pay check.
            Clay Roane PSD had been under a moratorium against all new water hook ups for 7 years. The moratorium was put in place by the WV Public Service Commission (PSC). Since the lifting of the ban in Noember 2001, only one new connection has been allowed (as of the meeting time) and that one person was local politico J.D. Morris. During that same PSD meeting, the PSC acknowledged that Morris had received a water connection without filling out an application in advance, had not paid for the PSC mandated connection fee, and had been put ahead of others that have been on the waiting list for water for years. Additionally, the PSC acknowledged that they had violated a WV PSC order in regard to new hook ups.
           As the media coverage broke on the now infamous preferential treatment of Morris by the local PSD, Ms Neff commented on the actions, and during the 13th assembling, Neff said that she stood by everything she had said in print. After the meeting, Neff commented that she was just fed up with a lot of questionable actions of the water provider. PSD Board member Gary Whaling said that he had had calls asking for her dismissal.
      And now for the rest of the story!
           On March 29, Trina Neff went over to her job site, the Procious water plant to pick up her check. Things were not good. The check was short over $150.00 or three days of wages. When asked, Chief Water Operator Jennifer Traub said that Lefty Summer refused to sign the full check since Neff had taken three days of sick leave during the last week of employment. Summers had another check drawn up which reflected no pay for the three sick leave days according to Neff.
           Ms Neff disclosed that she had many sick leave days saved up and certainly enough to cover the time off for illness. Additionally, Neff stated that the PSD policy and procedure manual was not violated in any way by her use of the time off and she should have been paid. According to Neff, it appeared like just one more bad faith attempt by the board to punish her for speaking the truth during a newspaper interview over the Morris embarrassment.
           Since being short changed on her last pay check, Neff has alerted the WV Labor Board of the actions of the PSD and expects to take the matter to a hearing stage if the Chair, T.G. Cruickshank, does not see fit to pay her what she is owed.
      Go get ‘em, Neff!


           Town Council under the stewardship of Mayor Arthur Jarrett met in regular session April 2 at the water plant. In addition to Jarrett, Councilpersons Helen Morris, Dave Derby, Wanda Chambers, Okey Burroughs, and Sally Legg present. Town Recorder Betty Murphy absent.
           The agenda was short, the first reading of the ordinance that provides for a town vote on selling the water and sewer plants; and, a pay raise for sewer operator Larry Chaffins. For those at the WV Public Service Commission, the bluebloods of Clayberry, and the folks that will have to pay for the proposed regional water plant, the issue of putting the vote on an election ballot was controversial. 14 months ago, council, under the direction of then mayor Joyce Gibson, and ably assisted by recent back to the table Jeff Krauklis, the vote was passed to get out of the water making business and give the profitable business to a regional public service district. After an administration change, that vote was reversed. Still later under another administration, council voted to give up the water operation ONLY if the proposed regional public service district took the white elephant, the sewer plant, with it.
           Most recently, council has reversed the reverse of a reverse and felt that the people that paid for the water plant should have say so in what happens to it. Although disputed by the WV PSC months ago, new state code interpretations appear to mandate such an election.
      Still the issue was thorny. Council person Dave Derby along with most in the community felt that if the issue went to the voter, the voter would never consent to tearing down a perfectly good, operating, paid for , water plant and get a debt ridden plant and higher water rates to boot. Derby has been passionate and steadfast in his attempts to see a new bigger, technologically advanced water plant built . One that would serve the entire county and beyond. Through out the stormy votes and revotes, council person Helen Morris has been an ardent supporter as well.
           There is another side to the issue. Those within the town limits have maintained that since they built the plant to serve the town
      =s needs, let the County government provide for such a large operation. Locals also know that it is much cheaper to repair and maintain an existing facility than to build a new one. With little growth potential within town boundaries and an upgrade in 1990, they also know, the current plant will meet their needs for years to come.
           Although much of the plant project dollars come in the form of grants, the project is still costly. During one of the many meetings, local Frank Murphy summed it all up with,
      @ We=ve had about all the free stuff we can afford!@
           With that being said, now for the meeting. The rift among the sides was obvious. Helen Morris and Dave Derby sat side by side on one side of the table, while Sally Legg, Wanda Chambers, and Okey Burroughs assumed the opponents place across the Formica divide.
           King Arthur read the entire four page ordinance calling for the town election. All followed along.
      @.... do we even need a second reading?@ Jarrett responds that no one knew for sure and that he had asked that question at the WV Secretary of State=s office.
      Knowing full well the time is now to stop the ordinance, council person Derby asked about even having an election, that why not just go back to an earlier vote of the council which said they would get out of the water treatment business, buy water from the proposed PSD, and keep their own customer base?
           Resistance by Chambers. Chambers said they have to have an election if they sell both the water and the sewer plant. Chambers,
      @ It=s the law.. it was determined at the last meeting.” Of course that wasn=t what Derby was talking about, and Chambers knew that. Derby reminded his compatriots, at that same meeting, they had been told to hire an expensive lawyer to draw up the paperwork and council had not done that. Somewhere along the way, it was mentioned that Recorder Betty Murphy had drawn up the document which compared to others provided by the WV Municipal League.
      Burroughs disputed Derby
      =s statement,@ They suggested that!@ referring to the need to have an attorney. Mayor Jarrett, A If it=s wrong, we=ll do it again!@ Jarrett said the cost for such an attorney was expected to be $2000.00.
           Now to the real issue before town council. Derby,
      @ What if the voters reject it? We=re back to the beginning@. Derby went on to say he felt that county wide needed water plant may be moved elsewhere ( so residents cannot hook up in the future).
           As for the WV PSC inspired water rates ( provided by Jim Weimer) that would come from buying water from a regional PSD for town residents, the mayor said no one would give them a solid answer as to what they may be in the future. Note: Randy Plumb, a spokesman for one of the menders for the project made it very clear, NO ONE KNOWS WHAT THE WATER RATES FOR THE PLANT WOULD BE ONCE IT IS COMPLETED.
           As for the rates, the need for the water plant, the plus it would be for the town
      =s residents, from the peanut gallery spoke Paige Willis. Willis,@ The PSC does not regulate town rates.... a whole lot of that stuff they=re giving us you could put around a rose bush!!!!!@ King Arthur seemed to concur when he said,@ IT=S BULLS***!!!@.
           Discussion ensued over how the county got in this sad shape it
      =s in with most agreeing the finger pointed to our County Commission which let an $18,000.00 construction debt from years ago climb to $419,190.62. The results of that dimly lit CCC judgement has stymied growth in this county for 20 years now. Further discussion on how lenders had taken the original water plant project away from the town and council when it went nearly belly up 13 months ago and had to revert to grant dollar hand outs to stay afloat.
           Derby reminded all that if the town doesn
      =t go along with building a water plant, the town would be held liable for $250,000.00 in design and engineering work already completed by Chapman Technical Co. Chambers rebutted,@ THEY took it away from us!!@ Derby was also concerned about losing the customer base which provides income for the town.
           Willis questioned why have a town if the Council cannot provide for water , sewer, police protection and the like!
      After questioning by several, Mayor Jarrett informed all that he had hired Deputy Miles Slack to be Chief of Police and work 20 hours per work for the community. Slack started April 1, the day previous.
           So what if the ordinance fails and the town keeps the water and sewage plants? Chambers,
      A We=ll continue operating. Let the people decide!@ Willis, A Don=t believe everything those Charleston boys tell you!@ Burroughs questioned whether any plant would be built if the town pulls out of the arrangement. Ms Morris,: It=s so screwed up now....@
           Again Derby pleaded NOT to put the issue before the voter and revert back to the original passage from last year. Morris,
      AThese older people are upset about rumors of stuff in the water...@ Derby, A I don=t think we should do this.... Should be like last spring..... if we sell the plant we won=t have any customers!!!@
           After clerk Dwana Murphy checked old records, it was decided that the council had to vote on the first reading. And now the vote, as expected, Morris and Derby NO with Legg, Chambers, and Burroughs in the affirmative. The first reading was passed. After one more reading the election date will be set and the voters will finally have a say in the decision making process.
      In closing, sewer plant operator Larry Chaffin will have to wait a while longer for his pay raise. Also, it was noted that the town lost 547,000 gallons of water last month due to leakage.
      42 minutes into it, it was over.



      03-23-02: Belt - Kenneth L. Norton, child concealment, arrested, ROB, hearing set.
      03-28-02: Guthrie - Ronald Lee Hamrick, fugitive from justice, arrested, forwarded to Circuit Court.
      03-29-02: Delk - Thomas Leo Lewis, DUIA-3rd offense, arrested, ROB, hearing set.
      02-06-02: Delk - Michael T. Butcher, speeding 3rd offense, appeared 3/27, ROB.
      03-21-02: Larry L. Legg - Nathan R. and Susanne Malick, fail to cause child to attend school, summons issued.
      03-22-02: Belt - David Jeremy Salisbury, reckless driving and passing on double line, appeared, ROB.
      03-25-02: Larry Legg - John Moore, fail to cause child to attend school, 3/26 case d/m with prejudice upon motion of Prosecuting Attorney, bond exonerated.
      03-26-02: McKown - William Joey Smith, trespassing and assault, arrested, ROB; Cunningham Motors Inc. - Sherry Jo Mullins, worthless check, warrant issued; Larry Legg, Director of Student Services - Laurie Anne Ellison, fail to send child to school, summons issued; Bailey - Kelly L. Moore, driving suspended 3rd offense, appeared, ROB; Foreman - Michael Kendall, obstructing an officer, arrested, ROB.
      03-29-02: Delk - Thomas L. Lewis, DWR/DUIA, arrested, ROB, conference set.
      04-01-02: McKown - Dale Morris, procuring gas with intent defraud, arrested 4/02, ROB.
      04-02-02: Slack - Jerry Cash, indecent exposure, warrant issued; Slack - Nichole A. Smith, DWR/DUIA, appeared, ROB; Slack - Nichole A. Smith, DWR/DUIA, appeared, ROB; Bailey - Benjamin Lepley, DUI, arrested, ROB.
      03-19-02: Putnam General Hospital - Betsy A. Rhodes, money due, subpoena.
      03-22-02: Howard Thorne - Stewart Sheridan, wrongful occupation, 3/29 possession of property awarded to plaintiff.
      03-25-02: Northwest Integrated Inc. - Pierson Lumber Co., money due; Clinton Nichols - Manfred Kuenser, DBA Filcon Inc., unlawful detainer, trial set.
      03-28-02: Telford
      =s Chevrolet - Goldie Woods, money due.
      Worthless Checks
      Notices issued -
      03-21-02: Clay Supermarket - Sunset Structures, Bridgette A. Poteet, Diana Goodwin x 2, and Leona E. McGlothlin (paid 3/25).
      03-26-02: Big Otter Food Mart - Teddy R. Cruikshanks, C & J Logging/Elizabeth Sampson, Alicia M. Schindler x 3, Roy W. Brown, Shari D. Bullard,Christy Breeden, Debra A. Carte x 2, and Judy Davis.
      03-28-02: Telford
      =s Chevrolet - Christine Risden and Chester E. Boggs Jr.
      04-02-02: IGA - Reti H. Bartlett and Ameya N. Proctor.
      Traffic Citations
      03-12-02: Sheriff
      =s Dept. - David J. Salisbury, reckless driving and improper passing.
      03-14-02: State Police - Michael E. Shoults, defective equipment; Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Francis Ann Stump, registration violations and no POI.
      03-15-02: State Police - Jackie R. White, operator
      =s and no POI; Sheriff=s Dept. - Margaret M. Fields, no POI.
      03-17-02: State Police - Beulah A. Beah, speeding; Apolla Marple, speeding; Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Jason E. Doss, failure to dim lights; John P. Siemering, speeding.
      03-18-02: Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Yvonne K. Shepard, speeding.
      03-19-02: Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Aubrey P. Grace, registration violations, driving on suspended/revoked, and MVI.
      03-20-02: Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Russell Glen Moore, public intoxication.
      03-21-02: Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Robert E. Stutler, MVI and defective equipment.
      03-22-02: State Police - Benjamin R. Roton, registration violations.
      03-24-02: Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Rule D. Stepp Jr., speeding; Jessica F. Cash, speeding and no POI; M. Sunshine Ormsbee, speeding; State Police - Edward Adkins, failure to maintain control and operator=s.
      03-25-02: Sheriff
      =s Dept. - David C. Burdette, expired drivers license, no POI, and registration violations.
      03-27-02: Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Bradley Joe Case, speeding; Rick M. Vickers, no POI; State Police - Christopher L. Jones, speeding.
      03-28-02: Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Chad R. Tyler, speeding; State Police - Brian Lee Withrow, seat belt violation.
      03-29-02: State Police - Kathy Jo Sayre, speeding; Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Nicole Smith, DWR/DUIA and following too close; Kimberly A. Spencer, operator=s.
      04-02-02: Sheriff
      =s Dept. - Willis Hamrick, illegal parking.




      1/2 TSP. PEPPER
      1/4 CUP CATSUP
      1/4 CUP WATER
      1 TSP. VINEGAR

      1) Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Sear the whole tenderloin on all sides in a hot, nonstick skillet. Remove from the heat and season with the pepper and red pepper flakes.
      2) Cover the tenderloin with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan and saute the onions and garlic for 5 minutes.
      3) Add the barbecue sauce, catsup, water, and vinegar. Simmer for 10 minutes. Shred the pork with 2 forks. Add the pulled pork to the sauce. Serve on buns.

      Exchanges: 1 Carbohydrate..3 Lean Meat..
      Calories..230..Calories from Fat..76..
      Total Fat..8 g..
      Saturated Fat..0 g..Cholesterol..65 mg..Sodium..482 mg..
      Carbohydrate..13 g.. Dietary Fiber..1 g..
      Sugars..9 g..
      Protein..25 g.


      2 TSP. SUGAR
      1/8 TSP. SALT

      1) Combine the mayonnaise, yogurt, vinegar, sugar, mustard, salt, celery seeds, and pepper in a small bowl and mix well.
      2) Combine the cabbage and carrots in a large bowl. Add the dressing, toss well, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.

      Exchanges: 3 Vegetable..1 Fat..
      Calories..108..Calories from Fat..46..
      Total Fat..5 g..
      Saturated Fat..1 g..Cholesterol..6 mg..Sodium..216 mg..
      Carbohydrate..14 g.. Dietary Fiber.. 4 g..
      Sugars.. 9 g..
      Protein.. 3 g..


      1/2 CUP SUGAR

      1) Pour the boiling water over the tea and cinnamon. Steep for 10 minutes.
      2) Strain the tea and add the remaining ingredients. The tea can be served hot or cold.

      Exchanges: 1 Carbohydrate
      Calories..63..Calories from Fat..0..Total Fat..0 g..
      Saturated Fat..0 g..Cholesterol..0 mg..
      Sodium..1 mg..
      Carbohydrate..16 g.. Dietary Fiber..0 g..Sugars..16 g..
      Protein..0 g..

      Hope you have enjoyed my recipes this week. I would like to leave you with a thought:
      The first thing you need to do is accept the fact that you have diabetes. A diagnosis of diabetes does not mean the end of life as you know it-only that, with some lifestyle changes, you can prevent some of the scary complications that may have afflicted some of your loved ones. It’s common to feel angry, depressed, or disbelieving when you first learn you have diabetes. Accepting the truth means working through these feelings in order to take care of yourself and live a full life.

      Until next time,
      Kay Kish


              From the get go, as the board members entered the Health Dept. conference room March 27, you could tell something was up. At 7:00 pm around the table sat Chair Mary Lou Devlin and members Lynn Sizemore Romano, Jorretta Gray, Connie Harper, and Loretta Bird. Health Director Karen Dawson was also at the head table along with Office Manager Linda Klotzbach close by.
      You got to have some back ground readers.....
           Four years ago an equally heated situation brought the resignation of the director back then. This evening, the board sat in two camps. Sizemore and Gray appeared to be on one side of the battle front while Harper and Bird were the opposing warriors with Chair Devlin squarely in the middle. For most of the evening there was little eye contact between the encampments. Dawson sat to the left of Devlin and looked as though she had already been through the wringer. County Medical Man Doc Boggs somehow got situated at the far corner of the table, a good vantage point to watch the action.
           As further background to the meeting, the agenda had been changed just 24 hours earlier. Originally, the agenda stated that a new, tougher Clean Indoor Air Act Ordinance would be voted on. That didn
      =t happen. The proposed new rules have been hotly contested over the last 6 months by the boardsters and last month, the board held a public comment hearing on the matter. During that hearing, most in the crowd of 30 or so, including Prosecutor Jeff Davis, openly spoke out AGAINST the plans to eliminate smoking about everyplace in the county. The new ordinance also has criminal penalties for coughers and hackers.
      =s a brief run down on the Health Department Board meeting March 27, 2002
           Meeting opened with Sizemore asking .
      @ Why was the agenda changed?@ Devlin replied that the prosecutor had made recommendations to the ordinance during the public hearing and, A Our attorney has not gotten back with us...@ Davis, by law, is the department’s legal beagle. Sizemore,@ Why??? As of the 11th , it was on the agenda??@ Director Dawson explained: Davis would not hear of criminal penalties in the ordinance; he said he would help us; he has never gotten back to us, they were expecting Davis to rewrite the paperwork for them; and, they were sort of waiting to see what happened in other state wide court cases. Devlin, trying to smooth things over: maybe Davis would have this ready by the next meeting, to get the wording in compliance.
      @ We felt like we needed to wait for the outcome.” Joretta Gray,@ We never enforced the old law!@. From the peanut gallery, Dora Jean Walker,@ He didn=t say he would rewrite it!... He didn=t say it that night.. It wasn=t supposed to be postponed!@ Dawson,@ The agenda was changed Monday..@ Devlin, looking at Sizemore,@ You want to vote [on it]?@ Sizemore,@ That=s what I=ve been saying meeting after meeting! DO YOU THINK JEFF IS GOING TO COME UP WITH A RULE ON SMOKING IN THE COURTHOUSE?????????@         Note: Davis is a cougher.
      The tempers were flaring during the discussion with several challenging Sizemore on what was and was not said by Davis during the hearing last month. It was not setting well with Sizemore as color was starting to show up on her neck.
           No decision was made on the smoking ban and no decision was made for it to be on the next quarterly meeting agenda either.
           Secret time: 7:11 pm. The boardsters, along with Doc Boggs, left the room for a more private discussion. Into the room went Sandra Graham. Out at 7:24 and out the building she went. Next for the secret time was County Sanitarian Teresa Morton who asked Jeannie Perdue ( RN) to come with her. 7:52 the door reopened to the public as Jeannie Perdue too left the building. Most in the gallery new the clandestine topic was : who was getting paid what; who was working more than others for the amount of pay received; and to settle hot issues away from the public
      =s eye.
      =t work!
      Now back in open meeting, Morton read from a typed letter she had prepared and apparently read during the secret time. She said she was a registered nurse working as a sanitarian making just $480.00 more a year than the office manager ( $26,226.00) Linda Klotzbach. She stated that since she does a whole lot more than just a starting sanitarian ( less than $20,000.00 per year), she should be paid more. Morton,
      @I don=t find this equitable at all!.... Every nurse makes more!@ Morton stated that the Division of Personnel was working another new classification that would raise the sanitarian=s pay scale if the person was also a RN. Note: retired long time sanitarian Roger Hannah made just $22,644.00 as an ending salary.
           Chair Devlin tried to get the warming conversation off the public table by asking that they table the discussion to the next meeting. Didn
      =t work!
      @ I=m NOT willing to wait that long.. My work record is just as important.. I=m still classified as a nurse!@ Here=s a cutey readers from Doc Boggs,@ How much nursing is going on here? I don=t see much nursing going on here! It=s a lot different now!@ Defending her agency, Dawson challenged the Boggs statements with: there are a lot of health issues; there are now a lot of issues that are not handled one on one; lot of school work being done; nurses now have lots of other duties; and, Morton has been doing those.
           Uh oh.. those red and blue splotches got bigger on Sizemore,
      @ Take those nursing duties away!@ Gray agreeing with boardster Sizemore: just leave her as the sanitarian, and she=s working out of classification, and there=s issues there!
           Somewhere in the middle of all this, Doc Boggs asked about the upcoming teaching of sex education in the elementary schools. Oh Booooy! Got your attention now readers! Boggs asked why Health Department nurses would be involved when health teachers within the school system could be doing it. This discussion was buried real quick. Watch for it to pop again soon though.
           Morton was not happy and reiterated her salary, how she should be making more than the office manager... And, and, and- others had gotten raises.
           With Boggs asking ,
      @ Where is the money coming from?@, Sizemore motioned to decline the raise. It wasn=t over yet. Doc and Devlin moments later spoke in favor of a Morton raise. Gray, AShe is over $10,000.00 above the starting salary!@ Gray seconded the Sizemore motion. Discussion on what Morton actually does daily, the lack of other sanitarians needing a job. Dawson said money could be taken from other line items to cover a pay raise for Morton. And another from Doc Boggs on recent attempts by Morton to clean up unhealthy condition of a doo doo running out over property and, A The prosecutor won=t back us up!!!!!!!@ Note: Long time readers noticed that in the Magistrate report a couple months back as charges were thrown out.
      Again Chair Devlin tried to get away from the thorny issue. Didn
      =t work again.
           As Morton again explained why an RN/Sanitarian should be paid more, Gray came back with verbal jabs like,
      @ There is a lot of idle nursing time!@ Sizemore reminded all that Morton was hired as a sanitarian recently and NOT a RN. Just a little back ground info emerged. Seems that there is some real friction among the employees of the Health Department since the printing of salaries in November 2002. Last month Jeannie Perdue , a long time RN, got a hefty pay increase and a promise for another in 12 months to get up near what other Health Department nurses currently make. During that meeting Director Dawson was against Perdue getting the raise and the board voted to do so over the objections of Dawson.
           Morton explained what each of the nurses do and their various program responsibilities. Morton disputed the
      >making $10,000.00 more statement by Gray. Now take a look around the table, readers. Sizemore and Gray are on the edge of their seats and are agitated. Bird on the other end of the conference table is sitting with her arms locked together tight with a look on her face like she was ready to explode. Doc Boggs looked sleepy and Connie Harper was nervously picking at her checks,
           The vote to deny the raise. Sizemore and Gray against the raise. Harper and Bird for the raise. The monkey was on Devlin. Devlin broke the tie with a no nod. No raise for Morton. Morton was steaming.
      By now the emotions were surfacing on all sides... well maybe not with Boggs, who looked to be in need of a nap!
      Harper asked that a mediator be at the next meeting. Gray retorted that everything should be taped. Devlin snapped back at Gray about out of meeting phone calls to Gray. Sizemore had had about all the snappy jabs at her integrity she could stand, to Devlin,
      @ YOU TALK LIKE YOU KNOW EVERYTHING!!... THIS BOARD HAS PROBLEMS!!!!!!!!@         Motion passed to tape all future meetings.
      Now 75 minutes into the meeting, the responses got edgy!
      There was a lot more meeting items that needed attention but during each item the long standing board rift was evident. Bird continued her stoic posture with arms locked together. Dawson held her head down much of the time. Harper fidgeted with an imaginary spot on her jaw.
            Discussion on raising the cap on employee hospitalization plans. Discussion on recent employee monthly co pays for hospitalization coverage which ate up much of recent raises. Boggs,
      AThey got a $60.00 raise [per month] and the insurance is going up $100.00!@ Dawson said the increases effect staff morale.
      And then, after repeated questioning by Sizemore, it was made public that last year, the Health Department ended the year in the red by $26,755.00. Dawson made mention that a
      AMelody@ was leaving employment June 30. Something was said about a recent hire that the board, or at least part of the board, new nothing about.
           Dawson tried to get the board to vote on the new year
      =s budget and offered two scenarios. That didn=t work either. Boardsters questioned why the very important information wasn=t made available to them ahead of time so they would have a chance to study it before committing to it. The exchanges were heated and fast paced. The part about a new employee being hired during tough economic times did not set well with Sizemore and Gray while it appeared that Bird and Harper knew about the hire long before the meeting ever got started. Hmmmmm.
      Part of the budget was based on pending grant monies. Questions came up over: what happens to the budget if the grants don
      =t actually come in? No good answers given, readers. It is believed that budget plan B which eliminates a position if the $25,000.00 grant don=t materialize, was approved somewhere in the uproar.
           There was no vote on the changes in hospitalization coverage which would of course affect the budget. 62 employees work at the Health Department but few can currently afford the coverage. Sizemore asked what would the cost be to give everyone an across the board raise? With all saying that an across the board $50.00 raise would be illegal, Doc Boggs,
      @ A lot of this is who you know or blow......@ Sizemore, A The lower people never get it.... they need it the worst!!!!!@
      During the discussion to change employee policies, the tempers flared between Bird and Sizemore again. Sizemore,
      @ It=s no wonder morale is low here!” Discussion on an Aequality issue@ popped up.
      =s head was almost laying in her lap by now. The storm was continuing! Gray asked about the policy change that would allow the sanitarian to do firings and have people arrested when the Director is away from the office.
           Most of the decision making got mired down in the emotions of the night. The meeting ended as it began, heated! Sizemore appeared to have been slighted in the way of knowing what was going on, sort of
      Aout of the loop@ syndrome. Other boardsters appeared insulted when any little question came up from across the table.
           The next skirmish will be held May 15 at 7 pm. Almost 2 and
      2 hours after opening, Chair Devlin commanded all, A I hope everybody goes home and cools off@, and,@ There should not be any personal conflicts here!@
      The five year old rift among Health Department Board members continues. It appears that on one side are those willing to come to a quarterly meeting and say “Yes” to about anything and from the far corner are those that want answers before any vote. Be sure to bring your own popcorn for the next meeting. It
      =s sure to be a dandy.