DECEMBER 13, 2001

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     While much of the country discusses stock mergers, stem cell research, directions of information technology and the like, Clay County remains disenfranchised from the world. For years much of the county has thirsted in wait for clean, safe, drinking water. Residents have attended public hearings, public service district meetings, wrote letters, and provided testimonials of third world like conditions here at home.
     Public Service Commission (PSC) reps have pushed hard to force Clay Town Council to provide water to Clay Roane PSD which serves much of the southern end of Roane County. There has been resistance from some in this county to do so. Concerns have been raised over putting additional water treatment stress on the aging town plant. Additional discontent has been raised over out of county residents receiving water service before long waiting locals are hooked up.
      Finally, on December 5 an agreement was reached. Members of Council met with a quorum of Clay Roane PSD boardsters, hammered out and signed a contract that allows for new water to be furnished to Clay Roane. From Council, Helen Morris, Arthur Jarrett, Sally Legg, Wanda Chambers and acting Mayor Betty Murphy along with Boardsters Roy Ellis, Gary Whaling, and Harold Summers signed their ‘John Hancocks’ to the document on that day. Witnesses to the signing included Glenn Nichols, Dwana Murphy, and Leonard Williams. PSD Chair T.G. Cruickshank did not attend the important meeting.
      The agreement calls for Clay Roane PSD to pay for one certified water treatment Class II operator and all benefits for that employee as well as pay one half of the cost of a larger water pump ( about $2000.00).
     The larger pump is needed to supply the additional water to the far extremes of the Clay Roane service area. The cost of the operator was agreed to since additional pumping hours will be needed to meet the new demand. With signatures affixed and Monday, December 10th set as the date to turn on the new customers, all left the meeting feeling that a long standing problem had been solved and finally, at least a few more thirst needs were taken care of. Water operator Jennifer Traub was to report to work at the town water plant December 10.
After the meeting, acting Mayor Betty Murphy commented that they would try their best to furnish the new folks water and keep up with the additional demands at the water plant . Murphy instructed maintenance worker Terry Traub to unlock the supply valve so Clay Roane employees could turn on the water bright and early December 10.
We have a deal? WRONG! Town officials mailed a copy of the signed agreement to the Charleston gang last week. The PSC gang has stopped the deal for now.
      Since this has been a long contentious issue, Ms Traub checked in with the PSC December 7 and was told NOT to report to the Clay Plant on Monday, and for the PSD NOT to turn on the water valve and serve the new customers. The feeling of many in the community....Jim Weimer is working behind the scenes. Who? You know, Mr. Spark Plug.
Contentious issue? Yes. In an attempt to push the Town into selling water to Clay Roane , Jim Weimer from the WV PSC, ordered Ms Traub to report to work in Clay three months ago! At that time, there was no written agreement from either party, Clay Town Council was not even aware of what was being pushed upon them, and some Clay Roane PSD members felt that Clover PSD ( in Roane County) was wanting to furnish the water. The arm twisting didn
t work. Ms Traub did not report for duty in Clay and the town did not start supplying water to Clay Roane
      Prior to the December 10 signing, Town Council forwarded a copy of the planned water purchase agreement to Clay Roane PSD. Within two hours, Clay/Roane Chair., T.G. Cruickshank, publicly commented that he would NEVER agree to paying for an operator for the Town
s plant. NEVER? Oddly enough, the PSD has paid for an operator at Procious water plant, their current wholesale provider, for years as well as many other expenses related to water service needs and equipment! Here comes the Weimer name again. Mr. Weimer hurried up a PSC complaint process against the Town for Cruickshank ( not the full Board) in attempt to force the Town to cover all additional costs related to pumping additional volumes over the hills and valleys to Roane County. Weimer insisted that the complaint be signed quickly, be faxed immediately back to him so the complaint could be on the Judges desk that same day.
     After seeing the complaint, PSC
s Jim Boggess ( not a Judge) basically said , drop the complaint since the two groups are working on an agreement and let the locals work out the agreement between themselves. Boggess making too much sense? Yes... Here comes Weimer again! After the Boggess decision, Weimer wrote another letter disagreeing with the arraignment and instead, Weimer asked for a Judge to decide the matter. Judge? Yep, an Administrative Law Judge and in a court room setting which would require the Town to pay for an expensive attorney to speak for them. Weimer won. The hearing is scheduled for December 18, 2001.
     Are you starting to see a picture of the Charleston folks running roughshod over the county
s only municipality and working behind the scenes?
      Mayor Murphy was contacted December 12 in the am. Murphy said she has not heard anything from the PSC to date and as far as she knew, town leaders will have to attend the hearing on the 18th despite having a signed agreement in hand !
      Are you thirsty? Hauling water? Worried what would happen in the event of fire? It
s going to be a while and this time the petty bickering is within the PSC
For additional insight into the PSC
s handling of our water needs, be sure to read County Commission meeting coverage elsewhere in this publication.

A Mother’s Lament

     The name has not been mentioned for some time. 37 year old Becky Parsons died July 17, 2001. Her death continues to raise questions around the county. Found unconscious by her boyfriend July 16, she was taken into their home and before calling for an ambulance, Beckys mother , Ninette Parsons was summoned. Two weeks after the death this paper reported the following:
      Rumors have been rampant since the death of Becky Parsons, July 16. Everything from murder, to someone filled her body with water from a garden hose, to a cover up of her death, have circulated widely through out the county. Parsons was found in the driveway of their home and died shortly after.
     WV State Police Officer Trooper Bailey, the investigating officer in the Parsons death, commented briefly Tuesday morning.. According to Bailey, the investigation is a suspicious death issue and not a murder investigation. Bailey, “I know there are rumors going around.

     To add fuel to the fires of suspicion, 6 weeks later on August 26th, Johnny Lath Taylor was found in his car with severe head injuries apparently from a bloody tire iron found at the scene. Mr. Taylor dated Becky Parsons daughter.
        During that coverage, a Deputy commented that there MAY be a link between the two incidents. The Deputy reported that a day before the Parsons incident, police had responded to a window broken out of Mr. Taylor
s vehicle while parked at the Parsons residence.
Now, five months later, Ninette Parsons is speaking out on the loss, the sorrow, and what has transpired since that warm July day. The following are the words of Ms Parsons taken during an interview dated Dec 12, 2001.
     Ms Parsons, “I just don
t think the law is working in Clay County for me. I have called them every week sometimes every two weeks since my daughter passed away. And I hear nothing different. She passed away on the 17th. She was on life support.
     Ms Parsons feels something else is at play here and commented on why it has taken so long to complete the suspicious death investigation.
Ninette felt that family ties are playing into the police work.
I talked to Bailey yesterday and said that maybe it was an accident. And he said, you know you might be right. [she laughed]. It wasnt an accident I dont believe! Nooo.
      As for what happened that July day, again Ms Parsons, “I got a phone call at 12.30. I was told that she was unconscious and he couldn
t get her to come to. Parsons would not mention the name of her daughters companion for fear of a lawsuit.
      Parsons continued, “When I got there, the first thing I noticed when I walked through the door, my daughter was a real tall skinny person, her stomach looked like she was going to have a baby. I didn
t know what was causing... Why in the world is her stomach so big?.. He hadnt even called an ambulance. I called an ambulance when I seen what kind of shape she was in. But in the middle of July, if you were laying out in the yard as I was told she was found, you wouldnt be as cold as she was. He had a fan and an air conditioner on. I mean my daughter was ice cold. I told him to turn the fan off . He did do that. I knew when I found her she was already brain dead. The doctor told us she had a blood clot in the back of her head. When the ambulance got there, well, there was only one ambulance driver. She didnt have no helper. My daughter was breathing but when she said she needed somebody to help get her on the stretcher,... You know who put her on the stretcher? Me and her [ambulance personnel]. He kept saying, I got to go to work, I got to go to work. I told him to go to the hospital with her.
      Ninette then went for Becky
s daughter and headed for the hospital. “He kept saying , I got to go to work.
A black lady came out and she was very upset. She said, ‘I want to know how all that water got in this youngin. And I want to know who left her to lay there so long before they called an ambulance. Now, referring to Beckys companion, Ms Parsons, “And then the boy spoke up, ‘I dont even have no water in the house.’ I know he does because my daughter was carrying as high as 50 gallons at a time in over there in jugs.
      With a broken voice Ms Parsons commented on her grand daughter, Becky
s daughter, “She broke down on me. She said ‘Mama I have been trying to be so strong for you. I know it makes you cry. Ive seen you cry.’ I said, honey you dont have to be strong for me.... It just about broke my heart. I could not explain to her why nothing has been done …
Parsons commented on injuries sustained that day.
The doctor at Charleston General told us she had hit something soft either grass or carpet. I checked her myself for injuries when I found her. He said whatever she hit was soft. Where she was suppose to have been found, there is no grass.
      As for solving the case and police work in the matter,
Nothing is going to happen because of who his.…
      Parsons explained the reason for speaking out now, Ninette now feels that Trooper Bailey lied to her. Parsons said that Bailey could not locate the telephone number of Becky
s companion, who now lives at Gauley Bridge. “I know he can. I dont like to be lied to when it comes to my daughter. I know they can get anybodys phone number. He told me the way he can get the phone number is if he makes a 911 call or an emergency call or something like that. Thats a lie.
      Sort of summing up the whole situation, “No one can do anymore to me this year than what has already been done.

      Parsons ending the interview ,
There was over 250 people at my daughters wake. I wonder where all them people are now....No one comes around me anymore. My daughter used to call me every morning. She’d say, ‘What you doing Mom?’ Every morning shed call me..” Parsons went on to tell of the last time she and her daughter went yard-selling for the last time. She had visited her mother just the night before her death. According to Parson, She [Becky] had taken the boy that had his windows broke out up to Big Otter for a ride. They dropped him off. They left the trailer at 11:30...... The doctor told me you could have walked around for two hours with that blood clot in her head and not even have known it.... There was no alcohol nor drugs in her system. They had an autopsy done…
       Finally, from Ninette Parsons,
I think Bailey has already surrendered .. I figure they are going to turn the heat up on me too. I wasnt even going to call you all until he lied to me yesterday. I cannot even grieve for my daughter because I have so much hate and anger. I cant put her to rest until this is completely took care of.”
       Five months and counting, a mother waits.

follow ups

        Boy do we have egg on our face. In the last edition of this paper, we reported that Wilderness Café on Main Street in Clay, had closed down. After hearing reports of its demise for some time and then seeing a big CLOSED sign in the window day after day after day... well, we assumed and you know how bad that can be. Wilderness Café is again Open For Business after being closed for two weeks and we were wrong! Did you hear that readers? We were wrong.
      On that same subject, Wilderness Café owner Chris Jones told us that her restaurant has nothing to do with a Central Appalachia Empowerment Zone (CAEZ) loan that has been referred to over and over again in the Communicator. That when CAEZ Director Jerry Sizemore speaks of a restaurant across the street which is way past due on a CAEZ loan, he must be talking about some other street or some other eatery.
NOTE: It is believed that many of the CAEZ Board of Directors are mistakenly under the impression that the Wilderness Café, just across the street from the CAEZ office, is the same business that they loaned $17,500.00 to over a year ago. Ms Jones said, that is not the case!
       Thanks to Ms Jones for keeping us straight.


  1. A Yellow Palm Warbler, banded here in Oct. 1995 was found dead in 2000, when it crashed into one of the New York “Twin Towers”. A Hermit Thrush banded here in 1995 was caught and released four years later in Yakuat, Alaska.
  2. Last year, the US Office of Surface Mining reported that at least 15,000 acres of abandoned mines across the state of WV coalfields are unclaimed.
  3. The children of Gulf War Veterans are two to three times as likely as those of other vets, to have birth defects.
  4. A ten year Harvard School of Public Health study of nearly 38,000 males ages 40 to 75 found that men who spent three to five hours daily watching TV had a twofold increased risk of diabetes compared with those who spent an hour or less.
  5. You can e-mail Santa Claus at:
  6. About 550,000 of the occupied housing units in West Virginia are occupied by their owner, according to 2000 Census data.
  7. There are about 630 State Police Troopers. Expected retirements will bring the number down to about 600 by the end of the year.
  8. The rate of accidents involving state owned vehicles is about 30 percent greater than the overall accident rate for vehicles in WV.
  9. About 600,000 children are in foster care nationwide, with about 127,000 eligible for adoption.
  10. According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases, women who drink four or more cups of de-caffeinated coffee per day are more than twice as likely to develop Rheumatoid Arthritis as non -decaf.
  11. West Virginia ranks sixth in the nation in cancer deaths.
  12. The hot Christmas gift for corporate clients and employees this year is the Ultilitarian Survival Emergency Kit.
  13. Americas favorite take out meal is pizza, Chocolate is second and chips are third.
  14. In West Virginia, just 2.2 percent of people 5 and older can speak a language other than English.
  15. The average American consumes 160 pounds of sugar a year.
  16. Nationwide more than 700 chemical pollutants have been identified in public water supplies.
  17. Fifty percent of all people who have heart attacks wait 2 hours or longer before seeking treatment.
  18. Approximately 17 million Americans have asthma, including 5 million under age 18.
  19. Until the day of his death, no man can be sure of his courage.
  20. If you are willing to forget that there is an element of duty in love, and of love in duty, then it’s easy to choose between them. Jean Siegfried

    11/09/01: Hosey - Bobby R. Hanshaw, accessory after the fact, case d/m without prejudice motion of Prosecuting Attorney, bond exonerated.
    11/14/01: Slack - James H. Dobbins, 11/06 failure to pay child support, indictment in Clay County Circuit Court.
    11/19/01: Delk - Randy Owen Weese, 11/08 DUI-3rd and fleeing from vehicle while DUI, probable cause found, bond increased, bound to Circuit Court
    11/26/01: Foreman - Jimmy Koch, 10/16 unlawful/malicious wounding, probable cause found - bound to Grand jury.
    11/12/01: Bailey - Charles DeWayne Siders, ROB for possession of marijuana less than 15 gms.
    11/16/01: McKown - Randal Lee Taylor, warrant issued for telephonic harassment.
    11/26/01: Belt - Allen Dawson, ROB for trespassing; Belt - Elvis Dawson, ROB for trespassing, received motion for jury trial from defendant 12/03; Belt - Drema Anderson, summons sent for trespassing.
    11/27/01: McKown - William Joey Smith, arrested, ROB for indecent exposure.
    11/29/01: Slack - Jeff Neal, summons sent for brandishing and trespassing.
    11/30/01: Clay County High School - Dora E. Layne, warrant issued for WC; CCHS - Teresa Gill, warrant issued for WC; CCHS - Teresa Taylor, warrant issued for WC; Clay Farm Cooperative - Eugenia Cooke, warrant issued for WC; Bank of Gassaway - Alicia Schindler, warrant issued for WC; Cunningham Motors - Ricky D. Hall, warrant issued for WC; Larry D. Legg - Anita Harold Summers, warrant issued for fail to send child to school; Larry D. Legg - Judy Taylor, warrant issued for fail to send child to school; Ellyson - Mable L. Wilson, arrested, ROB for obstructing an officer.
    12/01/01: McKown - Leonard Ray Morris Jr.,arrested, ROB for violation of protective order.
    12/03/01: Guthrie - Helen Diaz, ROB for driving suspended and defective equipment.
    12/04/01: Delk - Michael T. Butcher II, ROB for speeding; Delk - Chad A. Salisbury, warrant issued for domestic battery.
    12/05/01: Slack - Aunna Rose DeMoss, warrant issued for shoplifting.
    12/08/01: Belt - Randall W. Parsons, warrant issued for domestic battery.
    11/28/01: Melissa Drake - State Farm Insurance (Tim Hopkins, Agent), money due.
    12/03/01: Sherry and Richard Triplett - Crystal Brown and Kermit Mullins, money due.
    12/10/01: Nellie DeBoard - Stephen Blankenship, money due.
    Worthless Checks:
    Notices issued -
    11/28/01: Clay Lumber & Supply - Manford Kuentzer, $13.49 & $10.95, (paid 11/29); Teresa Bishop, $9.11, (paid 12/06); Donald Bishop, $3.66, (paid 12/06).
    11/29/01: Clay Super Market - Eugenia M. Cook, $205.69; Teresa Bishop, $66.50; Bobby E. Deems, $25.00, (paid 12/07); Mary S. Murdock, $25.00 and $34.18, (paid 12/07); Misty D. Tanner, $45.39, (paid 12/03); Michael L. Holcomb, $100.00; Robert Boggs, $24.71.
    12/06/01: Big Otter Food Mart - Mrs. Jason Whittington, $30.00 and $24.00; Alicia Schindler, $15.00, $150.00 and $15.00; Brandy Nichols, $35.00; Shannon Cavender, $16.42 and $26.16; Mitchell Adkins, $50.00; Wanda K. Church, $16.95; Robert V. Delaney, $41.09.
    Traffic Citations:
    11/23/01: State Police - Eric James Adkins, speeding and Jeremy S. Arbogast, speeding and registration violations; Dept. of Natural Resources - Thomas W. Cain, loaded gun in vehicle and hunting from a motor vehicle; Johnny R. Cottrell, loaded gun in vehicle and hunting from a motor vehicle; Frank M. McDonald, loaded gun on vehicle and hunting from a motor vehicle; Sheriff
    =s Dept. - Stephen M. Dye, speeding; James R. Rogers, speeding.
    11/24/01: State Police - Jesse Foster, no POI and seat belt violation; Jennifer Medley, speeding.
    11/25/01: Sheriff
    =s Dept. - Regina D. Carpenter, no POI.
    11/26/01: Sheriff
    =s Dept. - Rdy Frafton, speeding; Jeffery D. Jumper, driving suspended; Joshua E. Long, speeding.
    11/27/01: Sheriff
    =s Dept. - Gary Lee Ramsey, speeding.
    11/28/01: Sheriff
    =s Dept. - Roy Walter Brown, driving on suspended/revoked.
    11/29/01: Sheriff
    =s Dept. - Michael T. Butcher, speeding.
    12/01/01: Sheriff
    =s Dept. - Eddie D. Smallwood, speeding.
    12/02/01: Sheriff
    =s Dept. - Waseem M. Stora, speeding.
    12/03/01: State Police - Jeremiah L. Boggs, no POI and seat belt violation.
    12/04/01: State Police - Elaine J. Jarrett, selling beer to under 21; Earnest McCune, selling beer to minor; William L. Shamblin, selling alcohol bev. to minor; Sheila Stewart, selling beer to minor; Phillip Summers, selling alcohol beverage to minor.
    12/06/01: Dept. of Natural Resources - Wilbur W. Bucklin, littering; State Police - David Widener, consumption on premises and registration violations.

    Clay County Board of Education Meets Elaine Reed Named Clay County Teacher of the Year

         The Clay County Board of Education met for their regular meeting Monday, December 3, at the administrative office building in Clay. All Board members were present: R.B. Legg, Jr., President, Gene King, Fran King, Scott Legg, and David Pierson, Jr.
    R.B. Legg offered prayer and called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Previous meeting minutes, the agenda, and payment of current bills were approved with no discussion. Board approved increased receipts of $383,308.02. Superintendent Jerry Linkinogger explained that all money received was grant money, $157,000 of it from a class size reduction grant.
          Business Manager/Treasurer Loretta Gray presented the monthly financial report. Gray noted that receipts were down somewhat for the month and that they
    d not received any money from the Sheriffs office (taxes) for November. She also said payments from grants were slow, but they would come, sometimes quarterly. Board accepted the report without comment.
    Payment of a bill from Sports Connection of $367 for the Clay County High School (CCHS) Dance Team was approved.
    The contract bus route 1C was awarded to Henson Legg at $1,700 per month, $100 less than the $1,800 bid from Legg opened at the last meeting. Linkinogger announced that Legg had modified his bid, the only bid for the route. Board also approved Joann Gray Canfield as a substitute contract driver for route 1C, pending certification. Linkinogger said that Henson Legg will pay her.
    Last on the agenda was to approve a syllabus for a new course at CCHS. Teacher Connie Schoonover gave a short presentation on the course called
    Taking Off. The course is for students interested in classes all year long. Schoonover said shed asked teachers in different career areas to rotate 2 hour programs. A technology lab and tutoring are available all year long. She said the Youth Council will provide employment for teachers. The course will be pass/fail, and not in the regular schedule. Extra curricular activities and jobs will be included as credit for the course.
    All motions passed unanimously.
         Awards were presented to the following employees: Service Personnel of Excellence to CCHS secretary Valerie Brown, bus driver Delno Cohen, Clay Elementary teachers aide Valerie Facemeyer, and teachers aide Dollie Lyons.
    Teacher of Excellence awards to Patricia Underwood, Jamela Smith, Marlene Lewis, and Lowell
    “Buck Davis. Elaine Reed was named Clay County Teacher of the Year. All received plaques and had pictures taken with the Board members.
    Celia Cummings was on the agenda to discuss the dress code at CCHS with the Board but did not appear. Meeting adjourned to refreshments for the award winners. Next meeting of the Board December 17 at Valley Fork Elementary School at 6:00 p.m. TK

    Ms Eddie
    You asked me to write happy stories, well, I did that. I want very much to write this .
          I survived as a child in West Virginia. There were not very many happy stories as it was not a happy place to be. My home life was extremely BAD. I went to school in soiled -stinky rags if there was not too much work at home to be done. I walked to the grocery store; begged for credit; carried what I could home about three miles through the mud and the snow. A warm coat & boots would have been a luxury. The one thing I looked forward to was Opal Bailey letting me read a verse in the Bible, or someone else reading, and a short prayer. Many kids never hear about God or any thing good at home.
    We were raped and beat for so little as taking a bath. I was 24 when I started getting a high school education. Then, I got the privilege of Law School for two yrs. I never got to be an attorney, but I was a private investigator for many years. I have four girls married & gone which I raised by myself . I can only say that prayer in school taught me a lot and also gave me hope. Made me know that when I had kids I did not want them in a family like mine . Personally I feel prayer should be back in the schools, as do most of my friends. This is just my story.      
    Ms Eddie
    Ms Eddie is an occasional columnist for this paper


         As 2001 draws to a close, Clay County
    s Business Development Authority (BDA) covered many of the same topics they covered 12 months ago during meetings. Chaired by Paige Willis, the group met December 13 at the Courthouse with members Jim Knots, Norman Wilson, Arthur Jarrett, Morgan Gibson, Jimmy Sams, Dave Derby, Mike Evans, Steve Zaricki, Jimmy Sams and Jerry Nelson present. With a quorum in place, the meeting began at 5 pm.
         Mention was made that the CAEZ has hired an appraiser to evaluate the Boggs property at Moore Fork in the Northern end of the county near the Big Otter exit of I-79 and the paperwork should be completed by December 30, 2001. There is 244.94 acres involved and the property is being considered for an industrial development park. Although some of the property is under flood zone, it is felt that
    fill could be made from the hilly sections of the land.
           BDA Treasurer Brent Stover brought the group up to date on the long past due BDA loan to Filcon Manufacturing plant. According to Stover, Filcon is about six months behind in payments. Filcon has made just 8 payments total to date. Chair Willis commented that he had visited with Filcon owner Manfred Kuentzer twice last week in an attempt to collect some of what is owed, to no avail. To date, no new payments have been received. Willis lamented, that for his next visit, he was
    bringing his lunch and planning to stay until a check was written.
          On the matter of checks, comments surfaced on the number of bad checks that are floating around the county. Member Jim Knotts added that his company , Clay Lumber, had received two such NSF checks and after waiting four days, those checks had been sent over to the Magistrate office for collection. Knotts, “... [I
    m] trying to break him of that.. Willis, “His feathers get ruffled when you push him a little. Consensus of the BDA: nurse Filcon along and see if they can collect any more of the loan dollars
           During the discussion it was brought to light that there is no late charge penalty clause in the written agreement between Filcon and the BDA.
           In another deal with Filcon, concerns were raised over the slow pace of construction of the new building at Ovapa. According this agreement, Filcon would receive $90,000.00 in BDA property (at Ovapa) for zero dollars if a commercial building was completed and 15 full time employees were hired by Jan 1, 2002. Note: the accompanying photo, taken December 11, indicates the building is nowhere near completed.
    Also of note, during a November CAEZ meeting, Mr. Kuentzer told that Board , the building would be finished by January 2002 and 60 employees would be in place as well!
           During this meeting, Knotts raised the issue of employees, or lack there of. In this written agreement, and according to the Chairperson, if the terms of the agreement are not met, interest penalties will be tacked on. Here
    s a kicker readers, since interest rates are much lower now than when the document was signed, Filcon may now get cheaper interest rates.
          Member Norman Wilson brought out the
    ticklish issue of WV Development Office grant dollars being misspent by Filcon. The Development grant dollars were to be spent on industrial site improvements like land clearing, leveling, gravel, paving, and power supply infrastructure. Almost $10,000.00 of the $50,000 grant was used to buy bridge trusses. Those bridge trusses were instead converted to roof trusses and are now bolted onto the building. As for the money, Member and County Commissioner Jimmy Sams commented that all the $50,000 has been spent with $22,000.00 going to Elk Power for the installation of 3 phase power to the site. Wilson,Is he going to pay back for the trusses? Sams replied that Kuentzer is supposed to pay the money back out of his own dollars’. There was laughter in the crowd.
           For the upcoming years, Mr. Willis told the group they need to get better organized before any new grant dollars can be applied for. Now armed with some hands-on experience, it appears that the group is better prepared for future endeavors.
           Morgan Gibson informed the group that Kate Whittaker was preparing a grant application for a homeless shelter that would serve a 5 county area. Whitaker needs 30 acres located near an interstate and would like it to be located in Clay County. The facility could employee 150 people according to Gibson. Whitaker had spoken to property owner Frank Murphy who asked $1.4 million for land located near the Wallback area of the county. Gibson and Arthur Jarrett will invite Ms Whittaker to the next BDA meeting for further discussions. Sams commented that a site near Laurel Nursing at Big Otter was still available and would be excellent for such a facility. That site was under contract two years ago but has not been mentioned much since the State Road reported to the BDA that it would take over $3 million to widen the road to acceptable standards. Sams,
    Murphy Fork is still a good one. As for the high price tag to widen the road, Sams (I think),They kind a scared us to death.... We just quit on it.
           As for other available property in the county, the James A. Duffield land again came up. It appeared that Brent Stover and Jimmy Sams both wanted to speak with Mr. Duffield about possibilities with that land.
           From the peanut gallery came mention that on the WV Development Office web site, not one mention is made of Clay County and when
    Clay County is typed in, only a blank screen appears. No one on the group appeared interested in trying to even get a local contact, telephone number added to the web site.

    Byrd Pushes Congress on Homeland Defense

          WASHINGTON, D.C.... As the Senate continued to debate his proposal to provide $7.5 billion for critical investments in homeland defense, U.S. Senator Robert C. Byrd, D-W.Va., said Friday that delaying these investments could carry a heavy price.
    "If something happens tomorrow, next week, or the week after, the people at the local level need to know that their paramedics, their firemen, their policemen are going to be prepared. But no, all such pleas fall upon deaf ears. Politics reigns supreme. Once again, the people lose," Byrd said.
         Despite the support of a majority of Senators for Byrd's proposal, the Bush Administration has urged Congress to delay any investment in homeland defense until next spring. The Administration has convinced Republican senators to use procedural methods to defeat the Byrd package.
    "We do not have time to wait. We do not have that luxury," Byrd said.
    "In this game of political cloak and dagger, the only ones being stabbed in the back are the American people," Byrd stated on the Senate floor.
         "There will be a political victory for one party, but where does that leave us? It leaves the people in the cold. It leaves them vulnerable. That is no victory at all," Byrd said.
    Byrd's $7.5 billion homeland defense package provides:
             Bioterrorism Prevention and Response and Food Safety, $3.9 billion; State and Local Antiterrorism Law Enforcement, $500 million; FEMA Firefighters Grant Program, $300 million; U.S. Postal Service Anthrax Response, $875 million; Federal Antiterrorism Law Enforcement, $541 million; Border Security, $591 million; Airport Security, $238 million; Nuclear Power Plants and Federal Facilities Security, $550 million; and U.S. Port Vulnerabilities, $50 million.


    Friends and Neighbors,
         I just wanted you to know how much we appreciate your participation in
    Celebrate Clay County Festival at H.E. White Elementary. November 17 was a success for us.
    We are sorry that date was preset and so many people had other plans, deer hunting, Thanksgiving vacations, etc. All in all, it was a wonderful day! We will have to try it again.
    Thanks and Happy Holidays!
          Fran Naylor
    P.S. - If you have any ideas to enhance our community, or school, please call me at 548-5990, maybe we can put something together. Remember to Vote YES on Saturday, January 19th, for school levy. Encourage your family and friends to register and vote!

    Letter From Santa:
          I regret to inform you that, effective immediately, I will no longer be able to serve Southern United States on Christmas Eve. Due to the overwhelming current population of the earth, my contract was renegotiated by North American Fairies and Elves Local 209. I now serve only certain areas of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin and Michigan. As part of the new and better contract I also get longer breaks for milk and cookies so keep that in mind. However, I'm certain that your children will be in good hands with your local replacement who happens to be my third cousin, Bubba Claus. His side of the family is from the South Pole. He shares my goal of delivering toys to all the good boys and girls; however, there are a few differences between us.
    Differences such as:
    1. There is no danger of a Grinch stealing your presents from Bubba Claus. He has a gun rack on his sleigh and a bumper sticker that reads: "These toys insured by Smith and Wesson."
    2. Instead of milk and cookies, Bubba Claus prefers that children leave an RC cola and pork rinds [or a moon pie] on the fireplace. And Bubba doesn't smoke a pipe. He dips a little snuff though, so please have an empty spit can handy.
    3. Bubba Claus' sleigh is pulled by floppy-eared, flyin' coon dogs instead of reindeer. I made the mistake of loaning him a couple of my reindeer one time, and Blitzen's head now overlooks Bubba's fireplace.
    4. You won't hear "On Comet, on Cupid, on Donner and Blitzen..." when Bubba Claus arrives. Instead, you'll hear, "On Earnhardt, on Wallace, on Martin and Labonte. On Rudd, on Jarrett, on Elliott and Petty."
    5. "Ho, ho, ho!" has been replaced by "Yee Haw!" And you also are likely to hear Bubba's elves respond, "I her'd dat!"
    6. As required by Southern highway laws, Bubba Claus' sleigh does have Yosemite Sam safety triangle on the back with the words "Back off". The last I heard it also had other decorations on the sleigh back as well. One is a Ford or Chevy logo with lights that race through the letters and the other is a caricature of me (Santa Claus) going wee wee on the Tooth Fairy.
    7. The usual Christmas movie classics such as "Miracle on 34th Street" and "It's a Wonderful Life" will not be shown in your negotiated viewing area. Instead, you'll see "Boss Hogg Saves Christmas" and "Smokey and the Bandit IV" featuring Burt Reynolds as Bubba Claus and dozens of state patrol cars crashing into each other.
    8. Bubba Claus doesn't wear a belt. If I were you, I'd make sure you, the wife, and the kids turn the other way when he bends over to put presents under the tree.
    9. And finally, lovely Christmas songs have been sung about me like "Rudolph The Red-nosed Reindeer" and Bing Crosby's "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town." This year songs about Bubba Claus will be played on all the AM radio stations in the south. Those song titles will be Mark Chesnutt's "Bubba Claus Shot the Jukebox" and "Grandma Got Run'd Over by a Reindeer”.
    Sincerely Yours, Santa Clause
    Member of North American Fairies and Elves Local 209


          Through out the county rumors have been flying over a botched ambulance run made Friday December 7, 2001. The story has it that an ambulance was dispatched to the Big Otter Clinic to pick up a patient with chest pains for a run to a hospital. While there, the crew locked their keys inside the ambulance and there was a 30 minute delay while another set of keys was found for the crew. Compounding the story are reports that the patient ‘cardiaced’ while in route.
          Sounds pretty serious doesn
    t it? Sounds like a lawsuit in the making.
          To find out the real story, this paper spoke with Ambulance Service Supervisor Cookie Johnson December 12 around 7 pm. According to Johnson,
    I looked at the run. I did not see any problem what so ever with the medical care. I did question the girls about the keys. They didnt come here [Clay station] and get the keys or send them from here. They got the keys from the Big Otter station which was like a mile from the Big Otter Clinic. Thats where the keys were at.
          She continued,
    I didnt see no problem what so ever with the care that the patient received. I didnt see anything at all.

    On the Soapbox
    by Andy Waddell

           This time last year, Clay County was making headlines. And they werent in good light either. In December of last year, American Civil Liberties Union Director Hillary Chiz was at the Courthouse for a court proceeding. While there, she noticed Clay High Art Teacher Sandy King helping High School art students with pastels and colors as the kids were decorating the windows of the Courthouse for Christmas. As had been the practice for years, depictions of the manger, the three wise men, hovering angels, and Christ in all his splendor were coming to life with every brush stroke.
           Chiz, knowing full well the constitutional mandates of the separation of church clause of the US Constitution, approached Ms King. When reminded that breaking the law is not a very good example for a teacher to be setting for the students and that the artwork was way over the line as far as the courts are concerned, Ms King responded “It is open to interpretation..
    As Chiz went ‘postal’ over the comments, always up for a controversy, local do good attorney Kevin Duffy entered the conversation. Duffy disputed the manger scene saying that it was really a picture of a Clay County Home Birthing. As for the angels, those were recreations of the Clay County extraterrestrial monsters. For the Three Wise men, those were Dundon Sheep herders. Certainly Duffy eased the tensions and probably averted another costly lawsuit for the county. The art and the comments made news around the state for sure.
           Ms King and the high schoolers have once again completed beautiful, seasonal, holiday artwork this year. The colors are rich and the proportions are professionally done. But this year, there is a difference. The display on the Courthouse windows meets constitutional muster. The artwork does not slight any religion nor offend those without a religion. In addition to passing constitutional muster, the art this year does what it is supposed to do, remind us that this is a special time for all colors of people, for all beliefs, and serves as a reminder, that the holiday season is best when the good times are carried around in our hearts and minds. If there was ever a year that we don
    t need additional confrontations, this is it
           Change comes slowly in Clay County. Sometimes we are pulled kicking and screaming into the real world. Sometimes we just wise up. What ever the reason, it is a welcome change.


           There was a discovery made last summer by then Ambulance Authority (CCEAA) Chair Duane Legg. After doing some digging into the records, a CCEAA check was written to a local pharmacy for a little over $500.00. The check was to pay for medicine for an employee drawing Workers Compensation benefits. The already spent and canceled check was a red flag to Legg.
          Shortly after the discovery and shortly after Legg resigned from the Authority, Legg was asked, Why did you quit? His response,
    I am tired of the BS.
          The $500 check story was never made public until now. And of course, there may be good reason. Questions are now being raised like: When did the Ambulance Authority vote to pay for the super questionable expenditure? There certainly was no discussion on the matter at a public meeting and there is no mention of such in the meeting minutes.
    t forget to ask: If Workmans Comp denied the payout, why did the CCEAA pay for the drugs? Inside job? Why did the CCEAA set a precedent by buying drugs for one employee? Does that mean that any employee on compensation will receive similar treatment?
           Not done yet readers! The real question may be: What Ambulance Authority member went behind the scenes and organized the secret vote to cut the check?
    And finally, for this installment anyway, was Duane Legg told to keep his trap shut about the check for his own good?
    s taxpayer money folks!. Stay tuned for more, guaranteed as they say.
    STUMBLER # 2

           For sometime the Brownies, Daisies and Girl Scouts used the Geary Library just across the line in Roane County. As their numbers increased, there was a need for a larger meeting room. The girls meet on Thursdays from 6 to 7:30 pm.
           With permission given, the Scouts tried to meet at Newton in the Three Forks Community building. For their first meeting at the new digs, keeper of the key Juanita Linger showed up 30 minutes late. After the meeting, according to Becky Samples, the girls straightened up the place and left after holding a very short meeting. For the second meeting, Ms Linger arrived 45 minutes late and there was little use to convene for such a short period.
           According to Samples, in November, and for what was to be the third meeting at the Newton facility, Linger showed up on time and told the Girl Scout leaders and the girls themselves standing around,
    GET YOUR SH** AND GET OUT!!!! Doesnt sound too good does it? Well, theres more.
          The Three Forks building, the tax payer supported building, the building that was put there to provide for a meeting place for such civic groups, held a Board of Directors meeting Dec. 3 at 7 pm. Scout leader Mary Bradford as well as other parents attended the meeting to ask ,
    Whats going on here? Readers, please be aware that during this Board meeting, there was a 4H group holding their regularly scheduled meeting there as well. Board President Dorma Connelly ran the meeting. It did not go well and was hastily adjourned. About the only thing that was said for sure was, We suggest that you use First Baptist Church down the road.’
          Mary Bradford left in tears. One parent commented,
    You dont want us here! So much for girls getting a fair shake in Roane County. -AW


           Clay County Emergency Ambulance Authority met in regular session Dec 10, 2001 with Chair Bob Ore present as was members Gene King, Larry Cole, and Fran King. The appointed folks were surrounded by lots of employees in the peanut gallery. Also seated was Elk Power rep Leonard Williams and 911 Coordinator Paige Willis.
         The big item for the evening was the presentation of a hot off the computer Employees Policy and Procedure Manual prepared by Fran King. Ms King explained that previous manuals were incomplete and in places, illegal. King said the Authority would vote on the Manual in two weeks and she asked the employees to take a look at the major revisions made in the book. King,
    A God knows I=ll get calls tonight.... You are going to loose some stuff..@ Employee eyebrows raised. King explained that the crumbling financial picture was brought on by years of mismanagement by previous Authority leaders.
          As Fran began to explain some of the revisions and as employee questions were being raised, Chair Ore looked uneasy. Ore asked that the books be looked at later so they could move along with the meeting. The employee consensus: NO WAY!. Long time employee Mitzi Adkins,
    @ Lets put the rumors to rest.@ Fran countered Ore by saying, the last time,@ I was told we were too open..@ Ore was outvoted and the discussion continued
          Fran explained that if they don
    =t accept the mandated cuts, the service was in real danger of going out of business. The proposal included cutting personal leave days for full time workers and making the employees pay 25% of their insurance premiums. Fran said the savings would be $9563 per year and each employee would be charged around $33.00 per week. Also in the Fran Book, employees would pay a much higher rate into the State retirement fund.
         Each cut resulted in long discussions. Another section calls for the elimination of double time pay for holiday pay. Employee J Hughes replied,
    @ It should be double and a half time pay..@ Fran retorted that she had talked to folks at WV Wage and Hour Div and they said the CCEAA doesn=t have to pay even the time and one half wages. Again Ms King cited substantial savings by short changing full time employees. NOTE: only full time employees receive any benefits.
         Not over yet, Fran mentioned that a change had been made to the way vacation time is figured. The change eliminates an extra day off around recognized holidays. Fran,
    Athat should not be!@
    People were twitching in their seats. Little veins were beginning to show in a few necks. As for paying out lump sum for sick leave, nope. As for Christmas bonuses, nope, no more. AS for the plan approved at the last meeting to buy back vacation days so employees can have some extra Christmas cash, Yes but only up to 10 days and at the discounted rate of 60%.
          Needless to say, there was much discussion between the employees and the Authority in general and Fran King in particular. During much of the discussion, member Gene King was quiet and appeared shaken by the needed reductions in employee benefits. Fran,
    @ I want to help you all by keeping your jobs. I think this will help.@ Discussion on whether any other county employee has to pay PEIA premiums. Warmed up discussions on how overtime pay was computed by Ms King. Many were talking at once. Mitzi Adkins that many employees could not afford to pay for both an increase in retirement premiums as well as loading them up with hospitalization premiums at the same time.
           So how big si the overtime load. According to Ms King, last year over $73,900.00 was paid out in OT compensation and this year, so far, the figure stand at $37,700.00. Fran,
    A ...the 24 hour schedule is what got us in this mess.@ Long time readers will remember when CCEAA consultant ( and now convicted felon) Jim Denowitch said that working ambulance crews and paying them for 24 hour shifts, was the most expensive method out there. At that time, the CCEAA did not listen to Mr D and plowed forward into financial quagmire! Gene King replied that he did not know there was that much OT paid out now. Plenty of discussion disputing the figures and disputing the savings since some one has to be there , a Areadiness cost@. Mr Hughes explained that much of the expense would have to paid out anyway you man the agency.
          Employee Patty Mollahan explained that half the staff has already been cut with Hughes adding that there is just one Paramedic in the county for the most part. Mollahan reminded the anointed leaders that pay raises have not been mentioned in a long time. With Fran saying that OT is already down this year, Supervisor Cookie Johnson added there have been additional savings by using volunteers to dispatch the crews.
           The seriousness of the situation was beginning to sink in. Mary Hanshaw and other admitted that they knew all along that the 24 hour shift schedules were
    Agravy times@ and they knew that couldn=t last very long. Ms Hanshaw,@ We knew it would have to stop.@ Fran,@ .. this maybe too little too late but we=re trying.@
          The employees, that
    =s the full time employees, were getting antsy over the new manual and wanted the CCEAA to vote on the matter then. It is anticipated that many of the long time employees have seen the handwriting on the wall and have already secured other jobs. Probably the most contentious issue centered around crews going back to 8 hour shifts where no overtime is allowed. Mary Hanshaw,@ they are going to have to quit... full timers are the only ones getting cut..@
          With the spotlight fully focused on Fran King,
    @ It=s not our fault@ Mitzi,@ We=re worried about the hours..@ Mr Hughes, something about using funds and something illegal. Fran, AThere should have been cuts 5, 6, 7 years ago.. Once we get caught up, we=ll be all right.@ Almost in unison retorted that employees have been taking cuts all along the way! Mitzi,@ Don=t take my hours..@
          Referring to the employee salaries liste din last edition
    =s Communicator, Mitzi Adkins,@ Andy=s figures are not right!!@ Supervisor Johnson turned to Adkins and quietly explained that the figures were correct and that she had furnished the salary figures to the newspaper from W -2 forms.
    The other King, Gene King that is, came alive raising the issue of high wage earners within the department compared to others that earned very little. Mr King,
    @ We got drivers to think about. It=s only fair!! Everybody has got to make a living!@ Mary Hanshaw, A My $29,000.00 was gravy.@ Lots more discussion on how things were compared to what needs to be now.
         Ore again tried to get off dead center. No deal. More discussion on the Fran book. Johnson explained that Delegate Stemple wanted to see more cuts before more State money came their way, Gene,
    A AH SH**!!@ Mary Hanshaw, AThese are our lives you are messing with.@
           In response to the last CCEAA meeting, retired Director Jackie Pierson spoke up. Pierson was obviously there to defend herself from the recent comments about bills pushed under the table, checks stashed away in drawers, and the lack of security at the office. Pierson,
    A I want to explain this to Gene..@ Gene,@ Why just Gene??@ Ms Pierson reminded Gene of comments like >every Tom , Dick and Harry had a key on the street.= Oh boy!! Getting good now readers!!
           Pierson disputed recent statements with, the locks are pick proof, there are only five keys made, you cannot get another key made and only then from Judy
    =s Locksmith in Charleston. After explaining that Joretta Gray may still have one of the five keys, Ms Pierson came back again with stories of people climbing thru the overhead drop ceilings to get into the locked rooms. Ore asked that Ms Gray=s key be retrieved.
           The biggy for the night came as Pierson told the CCEAA that Fran knew about the big reimbursement check that surfaced two weeks ago. Jackie Pierson,
    A I told Fran about it.. She told me in no way to deposit it!!@ P was heating up. In response, Fran, A I knew nothing about it!!!@ And here it is readers, here=s how little secrets get out. Ms King made mention that she did know about yet another check, a check for $560.00 made out to Clay Foodland to pay for medicines purchased by the CCEAA for an employee. And Yes the name Joretta Gray was mentioned as Fran told all that Ms Gray had called her up ( last Sunday night) cussed her and called her a bunch of names!!! Fran,@ I never even saw the check!@ Ore, AI did tell Joretta.@ Cookie, A I deposited it.@ Ms Pierson came back with something among the other talking loudly and ended with, A I would not have donated my pay check!!@
            Now pay attention here readers, everyone is talking and talking about several subjects , BUT along about here the almost forgotten name of Joyce White popped up.

    As Ms P was explaining the CCEAA will get their money back from Worker’s Comp, Board members surmised one time CCEAA treasurer Joyce White was the back door dealer in the ever so secret check writing dealings to employee Joretta Gray. Ms Pierson loudly explained that the $1,500.00 check ( note: last time it was just $1320.00) was advanced to her [Joretta] to cover travel expenses.
    More More More More!
    OK, here we go.
            Seems Fran and Bob Ore have a little
    tiff starting up as Ore was explaining something and Fran cut him off. Fran, I thought I had done that?? Ore,Thats not what you told me, Excuse me! Discussion... Fran, Ill just quit! Ore, You dont have to do that!
    No fist pounding readers but very lively exchanges none the less.
            As for finances, again this month runs are few and far between and only $33,000 has been billed out this month. Translation: The CCEAA will reap about $13,200.00 of what has been billed. In November there were only 90 runs! The big announcement came : There is only $29,962.63 left in their accounts. From one Authority member,
    You can understand why we have to squeeze. Ms Johnson added that she has $5600.00 in bills and the past due insurance bill is $12,000.00. On top of all that, add more payroll ($11,000.00 plus benefits) to that and presto change, the CCEAA is now broke!
            During the Director
    s report, Ms Johnson reported that negotiations with the State Road MAY have eliminated that 10 month old fuel bills!!!! Johnson, Hopefully the fuel has been taken care of...I think Johnson reminded all that due to their tardy paying and non paying of fuel bills, the State Road will charge the CCEAA in advance for any purchases. Thats worse than a COD account.
           Now here
    s something interesting. Ore got up and handed Tony Long some paperwork as well as Mary Hanshaw for her daughter Sandy Hanshaw. Ore, You owe the Ambulance some money. Fran, You are duly served. Not fully brought to the table, but it sounded like the two received training and now have to pay back the CCEAA for the education to the tune of $600.00. Jackie Pierson, They signed a contract. NOTE: It appears that others signed similar contracts but those contracts have disappeared. Hmmmm...
           Ore asked that the group not go into executive session but Johnson countered,
    We need it!
           Before secret time, Elk Power Co.
    s Leonard Williams asked that the group NOT do away with local dispatching since the private company uses the service on the weekends. Williams, Its bad that Clay County cant have something, we either abolish it or give it away. Next up came Paige Willis who explained the county can get along without local dispatching and E-911 can take care of it. Willis likened the situation to wanting a Cadillac but only being able to afford a Buick. Willis, “Somebody is going to have to cut something! Big dialogue on the worth of local dispatching. Heres one to remember, Willis said that if the county pulls out of the E 911 system over in Nicholas County, the current 911 radios could NOT be used by this county. Willis disputed all of them by recanting a recent story of a local driver not being able to find 145 Main Street in Clay. One employee did not know the street number of the Ambulance office!
           Gene King,
    The dollars are not coming in... Its sad... It doesnt look promising…
    Get this, according to Ms Johnson, Richard Jarvis from Primary Health Care at Two Run wants the local dispatchers to dispatch for HMO doctors on the weekends. Consensus: No way!!
            Readers, there are four more pages of notes that we just don
    t have room to include. So... Finally, after explaining that the crews are neither state nor county government workers, the group headed for secret time over Ores objections. Reason from Cookie Johnson, Concerning my job. During secret time, the loud tones could be heard from behind the oak doors. First Gene, then Fran, then Gene...
    After secret time, and after saying they were discussing Johnson
    s job, the CCEAA voted to do away with the long controversial Dana Holcomb, $900.00 per month vehicle maintenance contract. Fran, “Thats $11,000.00 per year. As Gene was saying, “I got to go...its been two hours..., the session ended.

    short shorts

    *Charlie Osborne announced on Tuesday, December 11 that he would not be a candidate for County Commission during this next election cycle.
    *The long awaited Clay Development Corp vs Herschel Shamblin trial scheduled for December 13 has been delayed until December 19. Don
    t miss it, should be an interesting one.
    s one to think about. The Clay County PSD meeting was canceled this week as PSD Chair Keith King honeymooned in California
    *Clay County Radio was out of commission December 3rd through the 8th due to streaming problems with their provider,
    *Much media attention was given the school system as Delegate Bill Stemple provided the school system with Budget Digest grant dollars to replace the Ivydale Septic System which has been leaking for years and years. At times, the stinky stuff surfaced in the playground area forcing the playground to be shut down. The $ were earmarked for that one project. Word now has it that the money will be diverted to other needs ( away from Ivydale) if the levy fails. Can earmarked budget digest dollars been spent elsewhere? Yep, just watch.
    *Care to check out who is lodged in the WV Regional jail system? On the Internet , just type in,
    *According to WVU Extension Agent Steve Zaricki, several people have set up crafts shops during this years Courthouse Craft Shop. Space is free and continues through Christmas.
    *Several parents have called up and asked if taxes will go down if the levy fails. Some within the school system have been passing info that if the levy fails, the County Commission will just add taxes on to make up the difference. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Remember, the levy is called an
    EXCESS, translation: more than needed.
    *In last edition of this paper, Ambulance Service employee salaries were listed. When you go back and take a second look at the figures remember, many of the employees only worked a few months during the 2000 calendar year.
    *Lets see now, the CCEAA had $29,000 Dec 10. They have one more payroll in Dec, they have $6500 in bills needing paid now, $1000's in back past due hospitalization premiums, they have no state code mandated budget in place, and they owe for a $100,000.00 loan. To compound the problem, ambulance runs have been down for many weeks meaning collections will be down for many weeks and the newly hired collection agency in Charleston hasn
    t collected one penny as of Dec 10.