|1. Love is never having to say you’e sorry.|
2. In 2001 American’ spent $2.8 million on cosmetics that claimed to slow aging and undo skin damage.
3. Some 13,000 additional West Virginian’ have started using “ood stamps”since 2001.
4. About 300 cyclists are expected to participate in a “icycle week clinic”at the University of Charleston on July 17, 2003.
5. According to new research by the National Safe Kids Campaign, the unintentional injury death rate for children under 14 has dropped by nearly 40 percent between 1987 and 2000.
6. West Virginia has one computer for every 3.7 students, placing it at national average.
7. According to the US Department of Agriculture, Americans eat 80 pounds of chicken per year.
8. 21 million Americans are without health insurance year round. 59 million are uninsured at least briefly in a given year.
9. About 39 percent of West Virginia’ 6,821 bridges are either structurally deficient or functionally obsolete.
10. More than half the people who moved to West Virginia between 1995 and 2000 came from a southern state.
11. Only about 5 percent of the state’ 1.8 million people, belong to a minority group.
12. There were nearly 932,000 black children living in extreme poverty in 2001.
13. Statewide, about 3,000 fewer computers will be delivered to classrooms this year, because of recent legislative budget cuts.
14. According to the Washington based Consumer Electronics Association, Americans will buy 11 million digital cameras this year.
15. One of every nine manufacturing jobs in West Virginia has been lost since July 2002. According to a new report from the National Association of Manufacturers.
16. In a review of 22 US schools during the 1998-99 academic years, the General Accounting Office found that three fourths of them were serving lunches that contained 34 percent fat.
17. The Department of Health and Human Resources has awarded a $40,000 grant to a group of researchers from West Virginia University to study the state’ welfare system.
18. State government is the largest user of telecommunications services in West Virginia.
19. According to the National Highway Safety Administration, alcohol related deaths rose 3 percent to 17,970 in 2002.
20. In the state, there are only six sexually violent predators and 1,621 registered sex offenders. LMM
06/06/03: Rider – Elvis Dawson, malicious assault (04/16), probable cause found; bound to Circuit Court; Bailey – Christopher J. Samples, manufacture of marijuana, warrant issued.
05/19/03: Ellyson – Shari Duffey Bullard, destruction of property and trespassing, appeared 05/28, ROB, trial set.
05/28/03: Clay Supermarket – Jessica Swift, worthless check complaint, warrant issued; Mary J. Adkins, warrants issued for worthless check complaints X 2 (06/03 – Def. Paid checks and costs); Melissa Swift, warrant for worthless check complaint; Carte’ Quick Stop – Donald L. Morris Jr., warrant issued for worthless check complaint; IGA – Jessica L. Swift, warrant issued for worthless check complaint; House’ Market – Hollis Talkington, warrant issued for worthless check complaint (06/09- Def. Paid WC and costs, case dismissed); Ronald D. Hamrick – Coleman Hamrick, peace bond, summons issued, appeared 06/04, ROB.
05/29/03: Slack – Krystal Thompson, overtaking and passing school bus, summons issued.
05/30/03: Sizemore – Matthew D. White, DWR/DUIA, registration violations and no proof of insurance, arrested, ROB.
06/02/03: Rider – Shane Bonura, domestic battery, warrant issued; Workman – Travis Welch, warrant issued for petit larceny, arrested 06/03.
06/03/03: Belt – Mary Louise Douglas, summons issued for fail to stop for school bus, pretrial dismissal 06/11- case dismissed with prejudice upon motion of Pros. Atty; Elswick- Jeff W. Simms, summons issued for battery, pretrial dismissal 06/06- dismissed by State with prejudice; Slack – David P. Tackett, driving under the influence and no POI, arrested, ROB; Cunningham Motors Inc. – warrants for worthless check complaints issued for April Arbogast, Paul W. Pinson, and Kathy L. Cottrell.
06/04/03: Bailey – Thomas F. King Jr., driving revoked for DUIA, appeared, ROB.
06/06/03: Judith Harper, WV Bureau of Employment – Michael L. Jackson, warrants issued for false representation X 5.
06/07/03: Elswick – Scottie Lewis Neal, fleeing in vehicle, reckless driving and driving suspended/revoked for DUI, arrested, ROB.
06/09/03: Butcher – Sandra L. Adkins, shoplifting, appeared, ROB.
06/10/03: Mike Hodges, Extra Health Producs – Sally Legg, worthless check complaint, warrant issued, Def. Paid WC and cost of notice; case dismissed 06/11; Market Express – Candy Adkins, worthless check complaint, warrant issued, pretrial dismissal 06/11- Def. paid WC and cost of notice, case dismissed; Butcher – Mary Lee White, shoplifting-2nd offense, arrested, ROB; Bailey – Vincent E. Samples, flee from officer, arrested.
06/05/03: Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital, c/o Booth & McCarthy – Ronald P. Rhodes, money due; Samantha Johnson – Chad Muck, money due, subpoena.
06/06/03: Clay County PSD – Rodney Jarvis, money due; Walter Adkins – Ronald Adkins, money due.
06/09/03: Donald Neal – Jeremy Floyd, wrongful occupation, subpoena.
Notices issued –
05/30/03: Mike Hodges, Extra Health Producs – Sally Legg (misdemeanor file opened 06/10); Market Express – Malena Stone (paid 06/09); Loretta Stewart (paid 06/09); Candy Adkins (misdemeanor file opened 06/10).
06/02/03: Clay Co. Middle School – Nancy A. Brown (paid 06/05); Gwendolyn M. Moles; Hartland Superette – Candy D. Adkins (paid 06/11); Samantha Johnson; Mark Asbury (paid 06/06); Jason Stalnaker X 2 (paid 06/11); Anita S. Blankenship; Teresa Tackett (paid 06/10); Samples Market – Teresa Tackett (paid 06/10); Bobbi Nichols (paid 06/09).
06/03/03: IGA – Margaret A Oxley; Rosalie Keen (paid 06/09); Jason Stalnaker (paid 06/11); Pamela Ferrebee (paid 06/06).
06/04/03: Big Otter Food Mart – Alicia Schindler.
06/06/03: IGA – Judith A. Myers X 3.
06/09/03: Dimple Rogers – Gilbert Wilson Jr.
05/20/03: State Police – Sandra L. Swindler, failure to keep right, registration violations and no proof of insurance.
05/22/03: State Police – Mitzi Gail Eagle, registration violation, seat belt violation, and no proof of insurance; Darlene D. Harlow, operator’; Allen D. Legg, seat belt violation; Robyn L. Lilly, seat belt violation; David L. Pritt, seat belt violation and no proof of insurance; Joshua Adam Vance, speeding.
05/23/03: State Police – Elizabeth F. Catts, no child restraint.
05/25/03: Sheriff’ Dept – Tony Howard Thorne, registration violation; State Police – Daniel M. Triplett, registration violations and MVI.
05/27/03: State Police – Jonathan A. Barlow, speeding; Keith Ellison, no proof of insurance; Bobby Ray Hanshaw, speeding; Wendell B. Hodge, speeding; Randolph S. Morton, operator’; Terri Williams, no proof of insurance and operator’; Sheriff’ Dept. – Ronald D. Williams, speeding and defective equipment.
05/28/03: State Police – Patrick W. Morris, speeding and MVI.
05/29/03: Sheriff’ Dept. – Justin L. Brown, operator’ and reckless driving.
05/30/03: State Police – April K. Fitzwater, operator’; Doy G. Hanna Jr., speeding; Thomas F. King, driving revoked for DUIA.
05/31/03: State Police – Kista Rhodes, sell cigarettes to person under 18; Municipal Police – Sandra Ray Guy, no proof of insurance.
06/01/03: Sheriff’ Dept. – Amanda B. Collins, registration violation.
06/03/03: Sheriff’ Dept. – Samantha Schafstall, no proof of insurance.
06/11/03: Sheriff’ Dept. – Cynthia D. Rose, registration violations and seat belt violation; Roger Woods, MVI.
TOWN ELECTION SURPRISES
How do you get more than 50% of the voters out for an election? You field a full slate of candidates and give the voters a choice. That happened June 10 as Clay municipal residents went to the polls and cast their votes.
Elections are big events in small town America. Social events. Such was the case June 10th as nearly 30 people eagerly awaited election results outside of the polling place, the Clay Fire dept building on Church Street. The crowd formed even before the polls closed at 7:30pm. With no rain in sight, the night air was clean and comfortable for standing around and chatting. Traffic backed up as cars and truck slowed to ask, “Who won? … Who’ ahead …. How many voted?”By 9pm, the tall metal garage door was lifted and poll worker Glady Lanham posted the hand written tally for the world to see. The brick exterior wall served as the bulletin board for the paper report. The bifocal crowd kinked their necks for a peek. With darkness near, there was quiet for a second. Finally as folks in the rear strained harder to see, someone started reading off the numbers. There was quiet as those dealt the losing hand studied the results. Others, not believing the choice of the voters, pushed closer for a better view of the hand written numbers.
In the Mayoral race, incumbent Mayor Arthur Jarrett, pictures at right, out distanced challenger Glen Nichols more than 2 to 1, Jarrett, 102 votes to Nichols 44.
With long time Recorder Betty Murphy not seeking reelection to the $400 a month position, three filed for the vacancy, Dwana Murphy, Cathy Butcher, and Linda Moorehead. Ms Murphy got the voters’thumbs up 75 votes with Moorehead garnering 45 and Butcher trailing the field with just 27 votes.
11 filed for the $100 per month , 5 Town Council slots. Dave Derby and Helen Morris chose not to run again for office. Of the three incumbents, Sally Legg, Wanda Chambers, and Okey Burroughs, only Legg made the grade. The results: Phil ‘atman”Morris, 84 votes; Betty Murphy, 82 votes; Billie Jane Zeeger, 78; Frank Childers III, 65; Sally Legg, 60; Wanda Chambers, 58; Paige Willis, 57; Rene Moore; Buckshot Butcher, 46; Joyce Gibson, 42; Okey Burroughs, 40.
Of course, the behind the scenes stuff is what makes elections zing in Clay County. As the crowd waited, two distinct camps formed. On the far end of the street were candidates Joyce Gibson, Rene Moore, Buckshot Butcher along with friends and family members. Nearer Clay Elem school and at the other end of the street was Camp #2. There, candidates Betty Murphy, Wanda Chambers, Okey Burroughs and Arthur Jarrett sat along with their supporters. Candidate Sally Legg leaned against the white retaining wall near the middle of camps.
Behind the scenes, incumbents fielded a slate and paid for advertisements supporting their ticket and record of accomplishment. After seeing the election results, the slate and the record of accomplishments did not hold water. In the Council race, the number one vote getter did not go to an incumbent but rather a complete newcomer to Clayberry politics, Phillip Morris. Morris outpaced long time in politics Betty Murphy. Another complete outsider to politics, Frank Childers III finished ahead of incumbent council person Sally Legg.
Whispers came too. There whispers of vote buying and second hand talk of comments made by a prominent local professional. The comment, “I’l pay whatever it takes to see that Betty, Sally, and Wanda don’ get reelected!” As darkness came, and with election results in hand, the crowd dispersed as one irate candidate spun his tires while leaving. Another election cycle complete.
Long time readers of this paper will remember comments made in April concerning future water project funding in the area dependent on the outcome of this ballot vote. With King Arthur at the helm and Dwana Murphy, Phil Morris, Frank Childers, Betty Murphy, Billie Jane Zegeer, and Sally Legg in office, only time will tell if the WV Public Service Commission and project funders approve of the decision made by residents of the county’ only municipality. AW
STUMBLER OF THE WEEK
“epresentation You Can Rely On”By Andy Waddell
Since setting foot in the County of Clay, Prosecutor Daniel R Grindo has been controversial. We now have one more installment in the saga. Grindo is now advertising for his Gassaway based law practice in Braxton County. Grindo first hit the Clayberry radar during his appointment to the Prosecutor’ position in December 2002. Since then, Mr. Grindo has continued to make “he news”as coverage of his courtroom losses played out.
The Prosecutor’ spot was vacated by Jeff Davis who resigned from office on Nov 25th. Democrat Davis cited the need to make more money as his reason for leaving after serving 10 years in office. Several applied for the vacancy including Asst Prosecutor Barbara Schamberger, Kevin Duffy, Wayne King, Hiriam Lewis III and a Kanawha County law clerk named Minnick.
During the appointment process, it came to light, the young, soft spoken Braxton County native had just passed his bar exam four months earlier, and had little court room experience while serving as Judge Jack Alsop’ law clerk. State Code requires that a replacement for Davis to have the same political party affiliation. Grindo switched from the Republican party to the Democrat platform just prior to seeking the Clay County Prosecutor’ opening. So controversial was the appointment process, candidate Schamberger filed a lawsuit against the Commission’ actions and that suit is pending in Circuit Court.
In Dec , as then County Commissioner Tim “No Show”Butcher pushed hard for the Grindo appointment, the question was asked by Commissioner Sams,”If appointed to this position, will you move to Clay County?”Grindo responded, Yes. That doesn’ appear to be what’ happening.
In last week’ Braxton Citizen’ News, a nice big half page advertisement was published. The ad informed readers of Grindo’ 218 Elk Street Gassaway law office and practice in Braxton. For the coffee house crowd, setting up an office in Braxton County was a tip off that Grindo has no plans to establish residency in Clay County as promised. The ad goes on to mention his areas of expertise, wills, deeds, personal injury, and worker’ compensation. In bigger print came the jingle, “Representation You Can Reply On!”And Yes even the exclamation mark was in the ad.
Whether Grindo had any intention of moving into the county of his employ was brought to light by Ms Schamberger during the confirmation process back in Dec. Schamberger told our three blind mice, Grindo was building a nice big home in Braxton and she doubted his intentions of moving into Clay County. Those Schamb words now appear to have been accurate.
Letter to Brother Bill
by Evelyne McLaughlin
Dear Brother Bill:
Sorry you were unable to visit as planned, and hope you are feeling much better. HAPPY BIRTHDAY wishes to you, 62 is a big hump. We have had another week of rainy weather. My garden is looking okay. It is about 4 feet by 15, and I somehow manage to keep most of the weeds whacked down. I had a problem with my onions. Something kept picking the tops off of them. I could not figure out what until I noticed Tom the Turkey snipping them as he strolled by. I like the turkey so I guess we will have to give up on the onions. Oh, well, Mom always said, "Them that has must lose and if you didn't have it you couldn't lose it.” Mom (Addie Dawson) was a character indeed. She has been gone ten years this month, and there isn't a day that goes by that I do not miss her. Those precious memories of one gone by, death does not erase.
Mary Vaughn, of Blue Knob, and Ann Davis, of Pinch, were shopping at the K-Mart Wednesday. Randy Thompson, of Ovapa, underwent open-heart surgery this week. Get well wishes to Randy. Hope he has a quick recovery. The Gospel Sing at Blue Knob was very nice. Thanks to all the participants. Wanita Koch, of Blue Knob, was visiting with family in Ohio recently. I went to see our dear friend, Goldie "Pudge" Samples, of Horner's Fork, this week. She is a sweet 96 years old.
So many of the e-mails I receive are just plain junk and I do not know how to get rid of them. Some offer refinancing, Viagara, Xanax, dating services, stocks and a horde of other items that I am not interested in. However, one offer was for wrinkle remover that makes one feel "young again". Do you think that might help me? One of the preschool students I was teaching recently said, "Mrs. McLaughlin, you are old". I told him I knew that. His response was "and old people die". Another student told her parents that she had a "grandma" for a teacher.
Our Eagle reunion will be this coming Saturday at Stouts Mills in Gilmer County. We always have a good time when we attend. Don isn't feeling well so I doubt we will make the trip this year.
We were sorry to learn that Will Carr, of Twistabout Ridge, passed away this week. Our condolences to the family.
Until next time, HELP US ALL TO BE BRAVE. Love and prayers, Sis
DON GREENE: WV Radical
THE WILD, WILD WEST
I guess I was born to live in a different time or something. It has never occurred to me to lie or cheat for my own benefit or to take advantage of another person nor do them wrong for my benefit. I seem to be in a new minority though, the Honest Selfless Minority.
Somehow people that think just the opposite of me have eased into nearly every governmental position. These people seem to think that they live in the ‘ild, Wild West’ where they don't have to obey even the simplest law or regulation. I have heard everyone from local patronage workers to state agency employees say, "Well, let's do/not do it and see if anyone says anything." This is despite the fact that they know what they are doing is in violation of a law or regulation. They just do it because they can.
One example of this is a recently completed sewer line. Not one foot of this two-mile line was compacted to Federal standards as required by the grant/loan. However, the contractor was paid for compacting the material. So the public ended up on the wrong end of the sewer, so to say.
Another example is the continuing failure of the local highway department to do even its' own work in compliance with Federal regulations. This leads to sub-standard, narrow, un-ditched roads. This hinders the expansion of homes and businesses along these roads.
Another example is our multitude of development groups/agencies. Millions of dollars are spent on these people having meetings, going to seminars and such foolishness. Every cent of public money that is invested in these agencies has regulations attached that would seem to assure that the public would benefit from the spending of the money. But if these regulations are ignored the money is spent and nothing is accomplished.
The broad-spread violation of the ‘pen Meeting Law’is another example of our ‘ild, Wild West’mentality. This law is supposed to prevent our government from operating in a fashion that is not honest, forthright and beneficial to the public. But our elected, appointed and hired cowboys seem to feel it's better to fight to death for the right to be sneaky and secretive, than to even barely comply.
The education system is another example of this mentality. The desire to create new jobs and tap into more public money at whatever cost to the public or the children is also straight from the ‘ild West’ Sadly, the only time West Virginia looks better compared with the rest of the nation, is when the standards are lowered.
Until everyone involved in our government, from the voter to the bureaucrat, is able to break free of this ‘ild, Wild West’mentality the aspects of our beautiful state are doomed.
BOB CLARKE: Curmudgeon’ Corner
With West Virginia laboring, as usual, in the throes of economic agony, it is time to consult the “xperts” We have already been graced by a seemingly endless parade of these feckless, (a word I have always wanted to use – look it up) though nauseatingly self-assured creatures inhabiting our TV screens 24/7.
It is time to consult the profound wisdom of the great philosophers, in this case, the Duchess of Fenwick. Leader of a small, economically deprived country, the majestic old dowager came up with a can’-miss scheme with a virtually unlimited potential for future prosperity. In her immortal words:
…There can be no more profitable venture than declaring war on the United States, and losing.
Now before those of limited imagination and insight dismiss this unquestionably brilliant plan, it is well to be reminded of the post war restoration of Germany and Japan who benefited from a time when the United States still had deep pockets.
But, enough of vague generalizations: Here’ the plan. West Virginia secedes from the Union. In step two, we declare war on the United States. In all probability, we will lose, although some of those mountain people are extremely fierce warriors. In a final step, dazzling in its conception and promise, West Virginia, the world’ newest sovereign nation, applies for, and is certain to receive foreign aid. It is imperative that we implement this plan before the others think of it.
In order to provide a fair and balanced view, the kind we have come to expect from the likes of Ari Fleisher, Don (Caligula) Rumsfeld and the rest of the Pentagon mob, as well as Jerry Falwell, it must be admitted that this splendid plan is fraught with peril. “he best laid plans of mice and men gang aft agley,”(often go astray) Robert Burns says. In “he Mouse that Roared,”the Duchess of Fenwick’ story, the unexpected happens: she wins. We must plan seriously to avoid that dreaded turn of events.
Relying on the old P.T. Barnum maxim: “here’ a sucker born every minute,”the administration has sold its second major tax cut with the repeated litany of “obs, jobs, jobs.” This refrain sounds something of a false note, considering that, since we heard that song two years ago, 1,700,000 jobs have been lost, 500,000 this year alone. It is worthy of note that when the Bushies were pushing (the Brits would say “logging” the first tax cut, Alan Greenspan, the economic prophet in whom all things wise and good abide, praises it. Agreeing with the current administration is always a good career move. The few appointees who have voiced opposition or doubt have been consigned to obscurity. Non-toadies and non-sycophants need not apply. Anyway, Greenspan has observed that this second tax cut may not be a good idea. Suddenly, he is not so wise. The courtiers who wish to remain in the inner circle of King George II must keep in mind the dramatic moment when he thundered like an Old Testament patriarch: “f you’e not for us, you’e against us.” Such is the lesson learned, the hard way, by Colin Powell.
It may be the time to call for a period of national mourning: Ari Fleischer has announced his immanent retirement. Those with a flagging memory may not recall that Fleischer is the administration spokesman who announced on national TV: “mericans had better watch what they say…and what they do.” No doubt he thought at the time that his world would be much simpler without that silly old first amendment. Ari will reap a rich harvest from his short-lived importance. Hangers-on in the corridors of power always do. There will be the usual high-paid lecture tour circuit, the profitable TV interviews, and, alas, the inevitable book. If his vapid and inane press conferences at which he manages to say nothing in infinite sentences are any guide, the book, as well as the inescapable book tour will stir up a great deal of apathy. As painful as it is to give such a creature grudging credit, he seems a loyal sort, so it is unlikely that literary efforts will be of a kiss-and-tell variety. George Stephanopoulos was not so squeamish. He betrayed the man who made him rich and famous.
In the presidential campaign candidate Bush announced that he was going to restore dignity to the presidency and the White House. What was, of course implied here was: no more sleepovers in the Lincoln Bedroom, possibly, extremely expensive coffee and doughnuts in the Oval Office. As the old tune warbled: “he song is ended, but the melody lingers on.” Last week the word went out, that, if you had a consuming desire to have lunch with Karl Rove, all you had to do was put up $50,000 or more for the good of the party. Even if we had it, for that kind of loot the least we could expect would be Nicola Machiavelli, Count Bismarck or possibly the paragon of evil – Dr. Joseph Goebbles. Rove, by the way, is the unprincipled scoundrel who put out the word in the South Carolina presidential primary that John McCain, a legitimate hero, was the father of an illegitimate black child by a woman who, obviously, was not his wife. The rumor was untrue, but it lost the state – and possibly the Republican nomination for Senator McCain. Rove, by all accounts, is a master at this sort of sleaze. No wonder Bush calls him “oy Genius.” In any case, it didn’ take too long for the Bush White House to make the same discovery as its predecessors, the enormous money-raising potential of an incumbent administration.
Get the job with Halliburton or one of its subsidiaries. You won’ have to worry about slack periods or losing competitive bios because the company has friends in high places. National Security prohibits identifying names but the initials of the company’ highest contact are R. Cheney, a government official in what the intelligence community calls “eep cover.”
The Fruits of “iberation” Now that the Taliban is gone, Afghanistan is the world’ largest producer of opium.
Plus ca change: The more a things changes, the more it’ the same.
Timmermeyer, Clay County is STILL Waiting…
Ms. Stephanie Timmermeyer, Secretary
WV Dept. of Environmental Protection
1156 Hansford Street
Charleston, WV 25301
Re: Bee Run Dam, Wallback, Clay/Roane Counties
ID #80710, current “ertificate of Approval”expires 6/19/2003
Dear Secretary Timmermeyer:
This letter is to request your assistance in moving the above referenced project to its conclusion. For your reference, please refer to the following letters:
|1. My letter to you dated February 25, 2003|
2. Governor Wise’ letter to me dated February 26, 2003
3. Allyn G. Turner, Director, DEP Div. Water and Waste Management letter, to Fola Coal dated February 26, 2003
4. My letter to Michael Callaghan, previous DEP Secretary dated January 15, 2003 confirming agreements made in our meeting with Fola Coal at the Capitol on March 19, 2002
Please note that Governor Wise in his letter of February 26th, advised me that I would be hearing from you soon based on his conversation with you. I am concerned because I have not heard from you.
The completion of this Lake is viewed by many as an Economic Development project for Clay County. Surely, you and all the others who have been kept abreast of the status of the project are very aware of the poor economic condition of our County and understand that is why we continue to pursue this matter.
The 1994 Mitigation Contract Agreement, signed by Fola Coal Company, states that this dam would be completed in 1995. The current “ertificate of Approval”issued by DEP in 1999 will expire June 19, 2003. Clay County has yet to receive any benefit from the damages caused by Fola Coal in Clay County. Citizens are concerned that DEP has not held that company responsible for completion of contractual agreements.
The original mitigation fees amount to $2,000,000.00. To date, Fola owes approximately 1.2 Million. The difference between the quoted cost of the dam only and the 1.2 million owed is around $47,000.00. The difference between the quoted cost of building the dam and upgrading the access road is around $300,000.00. With the difference in cost in mind, DEP reported to me verbally on April 29, 2003 that there are “nencumbered”funds in the following accounts:
#3349 = $376,100.00
#3337 = $ 93,100.00
Total = $469,200.00
Therefore, any statement by the DEP that there are no unencumbered monies to complete this dam, would be inaccurate.
As stated above, the current agreement expires on June 19, 2003. Continued extensions of this project seem to be counterproductive. Therefore, I am requesting that you advise me, without further delay, of a construction start date, and of a scheduled completion date. I would suggest you put these dates into a binding contract with Fola Coal Company.
For the past 10 years, the Management of Fola Coal Company has been trying to convince Clay County residents that they are eager to return something to Clay County for the damages done in the County. We want to see good corporate neighbors in Clay County who have the best interests of citizens at heart but we believe that Fola Coal’ failure to build the promised dam will tarnish any positive image they may have garnered up to this time.
Should Fola Coal Company decide to exercise their option to pay your agency the mitigation fee for damages done to Clay County, instead of building the dam, it would be prudent that these monies be disbursed to Clay County since all the damages were done in this county. If this option is selected, I ask that DEP forward to me and to the Clay County authorities the following:
1. The DEP Account number that will be used for these funds, earmarked for distribution to Clay County.
2. The policy that you will use to distribute these 1.2 million dollars to Clay County.
I will anticipate hearing from you very soon regarding this matter. Further, via copies of this letter I ask that our Honorable elected officials and other recipients of this letter assist in whatever way necessary to bring this matter to a proper conclusion that will benefit Clay County Residents.
Thank you for your cooperation in this matter,
Editor’ Note - Copies of this letter were sent by Mr. Sampson to the following individuals: Governor Bob Wise, Senator Shirley Love, Senator Randy White, Delegates Bill Stemple, John Pino, Tom Louisos, and David Perry, Clay County Commission President Matthew Bragg, WV DNR Director Ed Hamrick, DEP Water Resources Div. Director Allyn Turner, Clay County Business Development Authority President Paige Willis, DEP Environmental Advocate Pam Nixon, and CAEZ Exec. Director Jerry Sizemore.
COURT ROOM STUFF
Back in Dec of 2002, Commissioner Mathew Bragg felt that it would be cheaper to hold a special election ( cost about $10,000.00) for the Prosecutor vacancy than to go to court and fight a lawsuit brought by candidate for the Prosecutor’ opening, Barbara Schamberger. After finding out that the county’ insurance provider would not cover the cost of the suit, Commission President Sams stated that he didn’ feel the hiring of an attorney to defend them would be too costly. The County Commission hired attorney John Brown to handle the court room duties. As of last month, their attorney has charged the county, that’ you the taxpayer, just a little over $6000.00.
Back in March of this year, juror Eric Pierson was charged with contempt of court after talking via phone to on trial for welfare fraud, Peggy DeBoard. Of course such is a real no no. After finding out about the Pierson inspired violation of juror conduct, Judge Jack Alsop was all peed off and Pierson was arrested. Since going the $10,000 bond requirement in Case 03-M-5, Mr. Pierson has had Jerome Novobilski appointed as his attorney. As of June 12th, no hearing date has been set.
Stemming from a Nov 2002 indictment, Peggy DeBoard went to trial in March 2003 for welfare fraud. As mentioned above, juror Eric Pierson’ actions caused the case to be tossed and set for retrial. Ain’ going to happen now. The case has been removed from the docket and all charges have been dropped. In the order issued by Judge Alsop, May 23, 2003: The Court having received the motion of the State of WV to dismiss the above styled action and counsel for the defendant having advised that the defendant has no objections thereto, it is accordingly ADJUDGED and ORDERED that the action be and the same is hereby dismissed with prejudice and stricken from the active docket of this court.
| So what happened? During the pretrial hearing ( after the first case was tossed, thank you Mr. Pierson) Prosecutor Grindo asked to introduce new witnesses. With the Judge disallowing such, Prosecutor Grindo dismissed the case against Ms DeBoard. By May 27th, the absolutely free and clear of all charges and with no chance of the charges ever coming back to haunt her, Peggy DeBoard returned to her Bank of Gassaway job.|
As for the Earnie Sirk vs. Clay Development Corp (CDC) lawsuit before the court, no hearing date has been set as of Thursday June 12. As for the story running around the county that Sirk tried to get the Judge to stop last week’ CDC General Membership meeting, there is no paperwork in Case # 3-C-26 to support the story. Word has it that efforts were made to stop the meeting but the Court would not hear the injunction.
Not exactly Court room stuff but close. The County Commission fired off a formal complaint against the Clay County PSD to the WV Public Service Commission. The CCC is against the local water provider purchasing a $60,000.00 double wide trailer for their office space. A hearing on the matter is scheduled for July 17th, 10 am , at the Clay County Courthouse.
WISH IT WASN’ TRUE…
In the wish it wasn’ true department, County Commission heard some very disturbing statistics June 3. The CCC along with around 10 in the peanut gallery heard from reps from the WV Workforce Investment Board (WIB). The county level sessions are being held in each of the nine counties in our region of the state. The other 8 counties include: Calhoun, Wirt, Jackson, Pleasants, Ritchie, Roane and Wood.
The idea behind the meeting was to identify the most serious issues facing it county and make long range plans to correct the problem areas. And problem areas there are!
During the presentation a statistician contracted through Marshall University, a Mr. Ed Strong, provided a power point presentation. His research was alarming and chilling. The following are some of the findings by Mr. Strong.
Clay County can expect a population decline over the next 20 years with more people over 65 years of age entering the local population.
In the 9 county WIB region, Clay County has the highest percentage of people unable to function. Strong said an example of being unable to function as: not able to keep a checkbook.
Clay County has the highest percentage of people in poverty in the 9 county region.
We have a much lower per capita income which is less than 50% of the national average.
As of March of this year, only 465 people in our whole darn county want or are seeking a job. Clay County has the lowest percentage of people ( above 16 years old) looking for work. Only 465!
75.2% of our public school students are eligible for free or reduced lunch which puts us at the head of the pack once again.
As for the kids getting an education on the college level? Not much hope there since less than half of our kids ( 49.7%) take the ACT test which is required before being admitted into college. That’ puts Clay County in the second worst position in the region.
And finally from Mr. Strong, in the 2000 –2001 school year, those that took the ACT exam scored an average of just 19.6 on the composite score. Once again, the second lowest in the region. So much for our kids getting a good well rounded education!
With stats flowing like water, and the stats dismal in every category, those in attendance found the info sobering to say the least. AW
Widen News by Darlene Rogers
Coming to Widen in the future is a Youth and Adult Center – 6 months to a year. SOONER if we had volunteers and supplies to to finish the center with. The Center will be run by the youth, with supervision by adults. Possibilities that are being discussed are: Technology room with after school programs, college courses, use of computer, or learn how to use a computer, etc.; classes such as (but not limited to) CPR/First Aid, bookkeeping, taxes, payroll, time cards/sheets, cash registers, community services, arts and crafts; meetings, conference room, etc; movie room; store: whatever that’ sellable, etc; kitchen – hot dogs, chips, pizza, drinks, etc; office space for business; recreation area/playground.
Jerry Sizemore of the CAEZ office in Clay has volunteered to assist the Center. Also assisting are Dorris Morris and Charles Johnson of Dille, WV; Connie Lupardus from the Welfare to Work Program of Charleston, WV; Dr. Sarita Bennett and husband Terry of Marlington, WV, and all of Dr. Bennett’ staff; Donna Shearer, Danette Condon, Lisa Abigail Tanner, Steve Richardson, Erica Green, Rejeana Belt, Lorraine Snyder, all of Widen; Sarah Anderson at the WVU Extension office in Clay; Nancy Holcomb from the DHHR office in Clay; Widen Postmaster Eva Tinney; and Rachel Truman of the Clay County Free Press.
Many thanks to Helen Rhine of Birch River and Widen’ Lorraine Snyder for their donations of kitchen supplies, curtains, etc., for the Center. THANKS GIRLS! Thanks to everyone who is assisting in making a dream come true.
Our youth in Widen and their activities are the reason for this business getting started. There is almost nothing in Widen except houses and people. Our youth need something to do to further their experiences and knowledge, and our adults need something for themselves. So, here we are folks, working on creating jobs, recreation, improving skills, and much more.
Anyone interested in assisting can call 332-5020. We need grant writers, office supplies, good movies, a large screen TV, tables and chairs, people who know how to run a business – doing taxes, payroll, etc. – to teach classes to those who are interested in learning these skills, windows, siding, any construction materials. We HELP others, and in return we help ourselves.
Daphene Belt has company from Michigan this week – she is doing good, but she’ not recovered from the strokes and heart attack completely. We know our Heavenly Father can do all things, be much in prayer for Daphene and all the sick ones we know.
Remember our service men and women, our president and all that are in office making decisions about our country. God’ people will one day be the rulers over this earth. Everyone get out, vote, and ask for guidance from our Heavenly Father and He will let you choose the right person for the job.
On May 24, three youth from Widen were in Summersville and had a headlight out on the car. The police asked for driver’ license, insurance, etc. The one driving did not have driver’ license; the other two got out of the auto at Go-Mart and ran into the bathroom. They were scared. The police kept the children until their parents came to get them – they were 16 years old and under. Another reason Widen NEEDS a Youth and Adult Center. Let’ give the children something to do here so they won’ be out illegally driving to other areas for things to buy or something to do.
Patty Harris, the wife of Andy Harris of Harold, was driving their 4-wheeler down Widen hill on June 1, and got into the gravel and flipped the 4-wheeler. Health Net from CAMC Hospital landed in Punk and Ruth Young’ yard, and Patty was flown to CAMC. Andy said Patty broke her collar bone, and at present is in stable condition. Two ambulances and two fire trucks were at the scene. We want to thank everyone for such a quick response, and remind everyone you need to drive slow coming through Widen. Patty wasn’ driving fast, if she had been she might not be here today. Be much in prayer for this family.
Mamie Rogers received a softball signed by her team, the Phillies, for outstanding performance striking the first three batters up out and helping to win the game for the first time in the three years this team has played. WAY TO GO, MAMIE! Mamie is my daughter, 9 years old, and I’ very proud of her. She’ one GOOD softball player.
Anyone who steals or destroys anything on Anthony and Melissa White’ property at 147 Braxton Street – Brush Fence, Widen, if caught will be turned over to the authorities. This is private property, and since December 10, 2002 the bathroom sink, kitchen sink, and cabinets have disappeared. Now the windows and commode have been broken, busted up into small pieces, holes knocked in the wall, sheetrock torn off the walls and ceiling. We would appreciate it if everyone would stay off of our land and stay out of our house. How can we fix this place up for a home when you’e tearing it up? You know who you are and so do we. Warning this time, next time authorities.
Larry and Barb Green were blessed with a visit from Larry’ oldest son Nathan this week (may God bless with many more visits). My children’ grandparents, Paul and Ruth Rogers of Huntington, were here on Sunday, and blessed us with their presence. It had been almost 9 months since they visited us. They do lawn service and don’ get away very often. We all went up the hollow to work on the old Keen place and had a very enjoyable day cleaning, mowing, and repairing the old place. Soon to be a home again. We want to thank Katrina Sprouse and Nate Malick Jr. for their help.
Eddie Gray is a resident of Nicholas Street now. Welcome to the community, Eddie. Nicholas Street is getting a new face lift, it seems everyone is sprucing their places up, it’ starting to look GOOD again. Way to go Nicholas Street residents!
Widen has some of the richest soil – it grows such good crops. Everything that I see in the gardens is doing very good. We are blessed here.
The Widen Community Center will have its next meeting on July 7, 2003 (the first Monday of every month). Everyone welcomed. Direct Action Welfare Group (D.A.W.G.) are supposed to be there if nothing happens. Come out and see what this group is all about.
The water update is that the DEP is going over the plans, and when they’e finished we will find out if Widen gets the money and the ‘o’sign. Be much in prayer for this project, it’ badly needed. The sewer clean up is tied into this project also. Thank you again Theresa Morton, for not giving the residents who don’ have septic systems a fine in our town for now. Theresa knows we’e working to clean up things here. She is being patient with us until we get the word ‘ea’or ‘ay’from DEP. Pray for ‘ea’.
Until next time – the more you give, the more you get. Amen.