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NOV. 29, 2001
MORE ORE IN STORE
DID YOU KNOW
BEHIND THE SCENE: WV PSC
SCHOOL BOARD MEETING AT LIZEMORE
AMBULANCE AUTHORITY OPENS UP
CLAY COUNTY DEVELOPMENT CORP. ROUND UP
SHELLY MOORE CAPITO
30" OF GAS AT CCC MEETING
REGIONAL PSD MEETING
MORE ORE IN STORE
Clay County Emergency Ambulance Authority Chair Bob Ore has been at the helm less than 90 days. Those ninety days have been stormy to say the least as the inherited financial swamp turned into a quagmire of no return when new disclosures were made public during the last Clay County Emergency Ambulance Authority (CCEAA) meeting. Full details of that meeting can be found in this edition of the Communicator.
Robert C. Ore returned to his native county after traveling the world in the Marine Corp and then as an engineer building industrial plants in many foreign countries. After returning home with his wife Belinda, Ore set out to serve the county in his retirement years. Ore ran unsuccessfully for County Commission on the Republican ticket last election cycle. Ore nearly beat incumbent Democrat Commissioner Jimmy Sams.
Long before Ore agreed to be on and chair the CCEAA, the government agency was in complete financial decay and denial. In June of this year the group had to float a $100,000.00 loan just to keep the doors open. That was preceded by a $36,000.00 loan in June of 2000 which was sought as a stop gap measure to keep the doors open that year. To date, and including the $100,000.00 loan, the county employer has less than $40,000.00 to their name and with two $12,000.00 payrolls coming in December, insolvency is on many minds.
In an attempt to shed insight into the problems and plans to save the Ambulance Service, Ore was interviewed November 27. The following are excerpts from that interview.
Communicator: Can the Ambulance Service be salvaged?
Ore: Yes. Logically it will take some financial assistance from someone. We don't know who yet. There are sources out there that should be pursued. Our collections won't do it.
Communicator: Is the Ambulance Service doing better now than just a few months ago?
Ore, I see it improving everyday almost.
Communicator: What are the big problems that you see?
Ore, I don't see any problems with the day to day operation at this point and time.... I don't want to be quoted on what [everything] I see. I have seen some recent obvious improvements.
Communicator: What has to be done next. What is the next step to turn it around?
Ore, I think one of the things we need to do is get an operating budget in order and go back to the County Commission and let them know that we are trying to run the ambulance [service] in a business like way. Not that that is going to get any money from the Commission, but it might get some assistance down the road from the County Commission. That is preparation for future operating funds we are looking for in that respect.
Chair Ore's comments on an operating budget refer to the group not having submitted a state code mandated budget for the 2001 - 2002 fiscal year. Budgets are generally submitted to the County Commission in March of each year for their oversight and approval prior to July 1. This year, then CCEAA Secretary Treasurer Joyce White submitted a budget never approved by the CCEAA. County Commission refused to accept that document since it lacked necessary information like: the name of the agency, wording indicating that it was even a budget document, and planned line item expenditures. To date, the County Commission has not approved a budget for this year and the CCEAA has been operating four months blindly in the dark. Most business leaders view a yearly budget as well as a business plan as the two most important management tools for operating any business.
On the issue of obtaining additional funding, Mr. Ore continued, We have the letters sent off to [Congresswoman] Shelly Moore Capito for financial assistance. We have talked to [Delegate] Bill Stemple trying to get us some financial assistance. We have not applied for any grant money. We need to do some research on grant dollars available. We need some staff help to do that. I don't know where that is going to come from but we can start looking for it.
Over six years ago, then Commissioner R.T. Sizemore appointed the first members to the newly reformed Ambulance Authority. The Authority was hastily formed as agency certification and licensing issues were threatening its very existence. The make up of the CCEAA has changed about as much as the weather has. And, like the weather, the policies and management practices of the CCEAA have been stormy on many occasions. Long time readers of this paper will remember meeting coverage where members yelled at each other, screamed at the public in attendance, times when members left the room in tears, and even ended up in a costly court battle over violations of WV Open Meeting Laws. In that court case, CCEAA members held a special meeting and voted to allot $50,000.00 of public moneys to defend themselves.
Again, Mr, Ore, We have got to pull this thing together. I think we have a reasonably good Board under the circumstances. Probably our strong suit is the lack of outside interference .That's a strong suit when you are looking at an organization like this.
Communicator: Have you stopped the bleeding and are more cut backs needed?
Ore, I would say Yes, definitely. Now... I can't identify those now. It is going to be hard to do. There are going to be some things that will have to do that are not going to be easily accepted.... that's just the running of a business.
As for the condition of the ambulances, Mr. Ore said they were getting by with what they have but if one had to be replaced, A If we had to put one down... We certainly are not in a position to replace one so we will have to cross that bridge when we get to it.
When the CCEAA was formed, the Ambulance Service had built a surplus $238,000.00 under the administration of Director Glady Lanham. Through previous leadership of the CCEAA, that amount has been dribbled away and now the group is in the red well over $100,000.00. As to how much time is left before the county's only emergency service provider has to close its doors, or to even to get it back in the black, Mr. Ore felt that they have at least three months left get it turned around.
Ore was complimentary of new Supervisor Cookie Johnson. Ore, I think she is doing a creditable job. Almost incredible job. Much better than I expected, too.
| With long overdue bills just now being discovered, cash starved accounts, employee moral in decline, employee hospitalization premiums behind, and a new manager in place, Clay County=s Emergency Ambulance Authority appears to have their work cut out for them in the coming weeks.
As a follow up on last edition=s lead story concerning problems at Clay County's low income housing apartments, Maysel Manor/Anderson Heights, care giver Ronda Dennis has written the following. The County Critic column is space provided for anyone to address long term issues that affect Clay County.
Hey...well, looks like Maysel Manor is a little quiet these days...I went over to visit a friend and found that all the door codes had been changed...no entry for us. Since the last edition of the paper, my sister has received ANOTHER eviction notice along with the other 2 tenants that had already moved out and had given their 30 day notice.
I don't know how you can be given an eviction notice let alone 2 or 3 after you give your notice that you are vacating a house or apartment.
Linda Hanshaw has given us some dirty looks...but not every one thinks she does such a bad job over at the Manor...she was sent flowers, card unsigned...were they afraid to sign the card...afraid to get on the bad side of some of the people that had moved, or just trying to suck up like many who do over there? Well...I can't say she doesn't do work up there, but I can say that I've seen the tenants doing what she was suppose to be doing. I heard that one of the tenants said, A All the trouble makers was gone from there now...well, if they think we were trouble makers because we sit and talked to the other workers and the tenants so be it...but I know for a fact the tenant who said the trouble makers were gone is just as much as a gossip as any other person that lived there.
I don't think she had the right to tell us what we could do while we were working...when I know for a fact, while she was on the clock, she was using the time for her own pleasure at the manor. I just hope every one at the manor had a great Thanksgiving...and lots of good food and desserts to eat since no one was allowed to cook over there for them. I'm sorry that because the manager is allowed to make her own rules, the tenants are the ones who have to suffer.
Front page news last edition centered on Clay Roane PSD allegations that laid off maintenance worker Rick Burdette had not properly read water meters. Mr. Burdette's replacement, Dale Deems, along with water operator Jennifer Traub made the discovery after they read the October 2001 water meters in both the Procious and Clay Roane service areas. According to information made public, the PSD will not collect for the $1000.00s of uncollected water.
As a follow up to the story, Clay Roane PSD Board member Gary Whaling commented Nov. 20 that as far as he knew there is no investigation into the allegations against Rick Burdette.
???DID YOU KNOW???
- A recent survey of 47,000 readers of Consumer Reports magazine revealed that back pain was the most common physical complaint.
- The annual income for a person with a college degree is 80 percent higher than that of a high school graduate.
- A National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine study last year found about 50 percent of medication errors in hospitals stem from ordering prescriptions.
- About 28,000 students are attending Kanawha County schools, the lowest in at least 40 years.
- Fifteen of the states 55 counties did not reschedule three or more snow days at their schools last year.
- In West Virginia, 33.3 percent of policy leaders are women.
- More West Virginians were living in emergency shelters last year than in 1999
- By year 2025, two thirds of the worlds population will have water shortages.
- Hunting is illegal in all of the Mountain State's 34 state parks.
- New vehicle registrations in West Virginia jumped 14.2 percent in October.
- No person has ever been killed by a falling meteor.
- The National Institute of Health shows that children who get nine hours of sleep each night perform better in school, experience better moods, suffer fewer accidents and are less likely to be obese.
- Sportsmen can now use the internet to obtain hunting and fishing license via web site greatlodge.com
- While the earth remaineth, seed time and winter, and day and night shall not cease.
- About 40 million adults in America have reading skills so low even basic tasks are difficult.
- About 10 percent of domestic crimes against men and 2 percent of domestic crimes against women were committed by a partner of the same gender.
- Some Census projections forecast there could be as many as 1 million centenarians by 2050.
- A new study suggests that teachers who are genetically susceptive to a certain disease are at risk of serious immune system diseases after years of teaching.
- Since Welfare reform became law in 1996, the number of Americans living in poverty has fallen by 4.2 million.
- Dont be afraid your life will end, be afraid that it will never begin. LMM
11-06-01: Slack-James H. Dobbins for failure to pay child support.
8-28-01: Teresa Morton-Walter Schoonover and Ray Nottingham for sanitarian violations
9-00-01: Bonnie and Arthur Jarrett-Michael E. Lanham peace bond.
11-13-01: Foreman-Robert Holcomb warrant issued for violation of DVP and destruction of property.
Foreman-Samuel Catts warrant issued for destruction of property.
11-14-01: Delk-Brett Conley for DUI 2nd offense.
11-19-01: Belt-David E. Burgess for DWS, regis. Violation and NPOI.
11-20-01: Guthrie-Joe H. Canterbury for driving while revoked for DUI.
11-21-01: McKown-Pamela Ashcraft for battery & dest. Of property.
Belt-Allen & Elvis Dawson for trespassing
Belt-Drema Anderson for trespassing
11-22-01: Delk-John J. Ward for DB & obstructing an officer.
11-16-01: Cunningham Motors-Allen Krock for other.
11-17-01: Helen Ann White-Tim Cartwright warrant issued for wrongful occupation.
11-21-01: St. Francis Hosp. - Carol Brown for breach of contract.
11-06-01: Sheriff-James E. Brown for MVI & illegal tires.
11-07-01: Sheriff-Jeremy W. Holcomb for regis. Violation and NPOI.
11-10-01: Sheriff-Kenneth A. Bostic for regis. Violation.
State-Gary M. Jenkins for DWS & def. Equip.
State-Justin E. Salisbury NPOI.
Sheriff-Bobbie Summers for regis. Violation & NPOI.
11-11-01: Sheriff-Brad S. Proctor for DWS 2nd offense & speeding.
11-12-01: State-Joe H. Canterbury for DWR for DUIA & seat belt violation.
Sheriff-Hannah J. Palmer for speeding.
State-Charles D. Siders for poss. Of marijuana less than 15 grams.
11-13-01: Sheriff - Ronald L. Adkins, Jr. for NPOI & MVI.
Sheriff-Mary E. Ferrebee for speeding.
State-Terry W. Hubbard for speeding.
Sheriff-Richard A. Jones for speeding
State-John T. Lowery for regis. Violation & NPOI.
Sheriff-Ronald C. Lucas II for speeding
State-Jerimiah s. Ramsey for speeding.
State-Jennifer M. Stone for NPOI.
11-14-01: State-Ronald Blankenship for regis. violation.
DOH-Lowell Thomas Jarvis for overweight, over width & over length.
Sheriff-Romie Clay Sayre for regis. Violaiton & failure to maintain control.
11-17-01: State-Chitra Sampath for regis. Violation.
11-20-01: DNR-Timmy Childers for loaded gun in vehicle & hunting for vehicle.
DNR-Charles A. Jones for loaded gun in vehicle & hunting from vehicle.
DNR-Jeremy C. Jones for hunting from vehicle.
11-23-01: Sheriff-Barbara L. Collins for passing in a no passing zone.
Sheriff-Benjamin Cruickshanks for NPOI.
Sheriff-Bobby Delaney for loaded gun in vehicle and no operators.
Sheriff-William C. Robinson for loaded gun in vehicle.
Clay Farm Coop.-Michael ONeill for $275.52-Paid.
Girl Scouts-Angela D. Gill for $130.50
by EB Goode
Greeting Beloved of the Lord in WV! My son JD (John David-17), my daughter Ivana-19 & her
toddler Shani-1 & her hubby Samson-21 are going to Honduras as missionaries! So, we need your help!
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There are also the best in Childrens Educational Videos, CDs, Tapes & books, as well as The Activated Word Study Program & materials! On the computer you can see it all at:
www.KidzVids.com For Prophetic Studies see
Well, we love & need you! Please have a safe Christmas Season by staying in prayer & the Word & in good communication! Lovingly in JESUS' Work Fulltime!
Eric B. Goode & team
915-373-4963 Ivan EBG http://www.geocities.com/ivan_hoez/ActionMissions.html
Note: Mr. Goode is a missionary serving in Mexico and contributes article on a regular basis.
*According to recently released Census 200 figures: WV ranked last in median household income at $72,000.00. Nationally the median household income was $120,000.00. WV's average income was $29,000.00 compared to the national average of $41.000.
*Also from the Census: WV is third highest in percentage of folks 25 years of age or older without a high school diploma and last with a population of residents over 25 years of age without a bachelors degree from a college. WV has the second highest poverty rate at 19.3 percent. Louisiana was the highest.
*WV Water Co serves around 500,000 customers in WV. The cost for 3700 gallons of water in Charleston was $25.25. That's twice the average price in 54 comparable cities and five times higher than water service in Greenville, SC.
*Back in August the WV Board of Education voted to drop the often controversial Stanford Achievement test after teachers and parents complained about Ateaching the test penalizing disadvantaged students and how Ateaching the test limited and/or prevented a well rounded education. The new testing which will come into place by the 2003 - 2004 school year will emphasize short answer and essay exams and will cost the state around $14.9 million.
*In 1960 there were 333,000 people in jail in the USA. In 1980 that figure rose to 474,000. Today there are nearly 2 million incarcerated. That's 668 of every 100,000 Americans behind bars. In the 1990s over 25 billion dollars were spent to build new prisons. Yearly operating costs for state and federal prisons runs about 30 billion dollars. Most behind bars are now non violent drug offenders. For every drug offender California jailed in 1980, it jails 25 today. The United States locks up more citizens than any other modern country. Last year there were 3,839,532 on probation and 725,527 people were on parole.
*As for prayer in school, Virginia students are now being forced to start each school day off with a minute of silent meditation. The US Supreme Court has now been asked to intervene and stop the practice. A lower Court ruled last year that the practice was constitutional. The high court is expected to rule on the case late next spring.
*WV Ethics Commission has ruled that Lewisburg City Council can not limit public comment during Council meetings. Council wanted to limit the public to speaking on issues on the current meeting agenda. The Ethics folks also reminded Lewisburg that anyone wishing to speak could not be required to sign up to speak more than 15 minutes before the start of the meeting.
*Wilderness Café on Main Street , downtown Clayberry, has closed its doors. At issue may be the CAEZ loan that helped the eatery open up two years ago. That loan was given to original owner Clint Jones who has long since left the business. Equipment was used as collateral on the $18,000.00 note.
*For months and months the Ambulance Authority has tried to negotiate an agreement with Laurel Nursing Home at Big Otter. Laurel is a for profit, private company headquartered in Canada with several nursing homes located in the east. The agreement would force Laurel to pay for non emergency transports performed by Clay ambulance crews. To date, and for a variety of reasons, the meeting with local administrators has not happened. Around the county, many ask, why are they wasting so much time setting up a meeting with local administrators who have little or no say so in a corporate decision.
*Why can't we get rid of bad teachers? Once they are hired you can't get rid of them! That may have been the case in the past but not so now. During the last school year, the WV Department of Education revoked 31 teaching certificates around the state. Teachers can not work in WV without a license. Although names of the teachers were not released, the reasons for the firings included: credit card fraud, drinking alcohol with students, romantic relationships with students, drug convictions, Internet pornography on school computers, and teachers that gave students answers to standardized tests. Under state law, the state superintendent must revoke a license of any teacher for drunkenness, untruthfulness, immorality or for any moral defect which would render him/her unfit for the proper performance of their duties as a teacher.
*The US Supreme Court will decide next spring if schools can force drug testing on any student who wishes to participate in any after school activity. Currently only students involved in athletic events have to submit to such drug testing. The case stems from an Oklahoma school system where suspicion-less drug testing began in 1998, including those participating in Chess Club. A Federal appeals court ruled that these tests violated the Constitutional guarantee against unreasonable searches.
*Alabama is the only state in the Union requiring biology text books to have a sticker on them warning students and parents that,evolution is a controversial theory they should question.
*Under President Bush's new anti terrorist policy, prison inmates loose their attorney-client privileges if the warden feels there is a reasonable suspicion that the inmates are using contacts to facilitate acts of terrorism or violence. Additionally, their mail will also be inspected. Civil Libertarian groups are expecting a challenge to this new policy in court soon.
*Boy, here is one that Clay County needs. According to Charleston Newspaper reports, there is a new group that will provide training to non profit agencies in WV. The group, Life Bridge, is funded by Untied Way of the Kanawha Valley. The goal is to provide non profits with technical assistance such as how to read budgets, audits, and other documents. Raise your hand readers if you know of any groups needing training in Clay County!
BEHIND THE SCENES: WV PSC
Probably the most confusing story to keep track of is the on again, off again, regional water plant. At first, the $4 million plant was to be built and operated by the town of Clay. A few months later the plan changed. The new plan, affectionately called the Jim Weimer Abestest plan , called for a regional public service district to be formed, merge all the little PSDs into that group, and have the new regional PSD build and operate the planned water plant. The town of Clay would be forced to tear down their water plant and become a wholesale customer of the new PSD.
As the water plant plans changed, so did leadership at Town Hall. Elected Mayor Joyce Gibson pushed hard for the original plan and cast the tie breaking vote to build the plant last fall. Diminishing health forced Gibson out of office. Next came appointed Mayor S.S. Jamie who ,after studying the original plan, decided that the plan wouldn=t work and the financial burden on the town was too great. Less than 5 weeks in office, Mayor Jamie resigned stating that the Council did not have confidence in his leadership. The water plant was stalled. One Mayor said do it while the second said no. Along in there some where, WV Public Service Commission=s Jim Weimer came up with the Abestest plan!!
With Mayor Jamie out of the picture, just returning to his home turf, Glenwood Nichols came into power and led the charge for this bestest plan and, with a split vote, Council agreed to go out of the water business. That Abestest yet, the third plan, called for the town to bow out of building the water plant. Mayor Nichols also left his appointed office shortly after the vote. For the last three months Town Recorder Betty Murphy has held the position of acting mayor.
While the new water plant is being bid and under construction, the bestest plan calls for the town of Clay to supply water to a growing area of Clay County (outside of town limits) and parts of Roane County.
After doing some number crunching, Ms Murphy, now Mayor Murphy, felt the Jim Weimer plan was not advantageous for the town and came up with one she feels is better for her constituents. The Murphy plan calls for Clay Roane to share a bigger portion of the costs associated with supplying Clay Roane PSD water while the new plant is under construction.
During a November 5th Clay Roane PSD meeting, Chair T.G. Cruickshank stated that he would never agree to such a deal and a formal complaint was filed with the WV Public Service Commission November 6. Note: Although the complaint was signed by Mr. Cruickshank and filed, the Clay Roane PSD never voted to do so!
With all that under our belts, now it's time to get to the rest of the story, as Mr. Harvey would say.
How did the complaint get filed so quickly? Usually such paperwork takes time at the PSC. Behind the scenes Jim Weimer from the PSC called and faxed and faxed and called still again to see that the official complaint against the town of Clay was handled within 24 hours of Town Council's vote to change the Jim (bestest yet) Weimer plan.
The complaint asked that the Town be forced to sell water to Clay Roane immediately
With the complaint filed, Mayor Murphy replied to the issues in a brief, to the point letter. The letter stated that an agreement to supply water to Clay Roane has been approved by Town Council and Council was awaiting a response from Clay Roane. After receipt of the letter by the WV PSC, analyst Jim Boggess denied the complaint from Clay Roane on Nov 13. Note: Remember that date readers.
Weimer pushed hard for granting the relief sought in the complaint despite what the Town thought would be a fair deal. Weimer's compassionate written plea included: the history of the ability of the Town of Clay to prepare and agree to contracts involving water services provides little surety that an expedient process is possible despite a Commission deadline to do so. Thus leaving the residents of Clay County the likelihood that the current moratorium will not end soon. With the winter months nearly upon the Region many customers who badly need water service will be forced to endure another winter season hauling water in dangerous winter conditions and possibly be required to without water during periods of severe weather....
Weimer wanted the issue brought before an Administrative Law Judge. Instead PSC analyst Jim Boggess made the decision to drop the complaint.
Even more interesting is a letter dated Nov 16 from PSC attorney Meyishi Blair. Note that the letter was three days after Boggess made his decision. Ms Blair wrote in part, Staff Counsel would recommend that the Commission retain the case for decision and grant immediate interim relief. It appears that even after the decision was made by Boggess, Ms Blair and Mr Weimer were still working on Clay Roane=s behalf.
Many in the community feel that the WV PSC has worked hard to build the questionable plant in the county. Some Town Council members and some Clay Regional PSD members have openly questioned Jim Weimer tactics to get a water plant built no matter what the costs to the county and future customers. It now appears that the WV PSC has worked even harder to force the Town of Clay into supplying water to Roane County and do so without an agreement in hand between the two parties.
Needless to say, the behind the scenes letters from the PSC has not set well with Murphy. In response to what appears to be back door work at the PSC, Ms Murphy disputed Weimer findings in a letter dated Nov 22. Excerpts from that letter include:
...Clay Water pumps from 10 to 12 hours per day and 4 more when the tank is cleaned....The Maysel booster pump has never been upgraded as Mr Hildruth, P.E. suggested necessary to supply extra customers.....the Maysel tank is badly rusted and leaking, the bottom is almost gone. We have 2 very old raw water pumps and no spare and would have no down time for repairs and maintenance...
We are very aware these customers need water but Clay Water is not the only supplier available. Meyishi Blair, staff attorney stated in open meetings at the Clay County Courthouse some time back that the Clover PSD is ready, willing , and able to supply Clay Roane PSD water. Clay Water needs the customers but definitely needs some upgrades to do so...... [we] simply do not have the means for the upgrades at this time....
Clay Water is willing to try to supply Clay Roane water.... to be fair to all customers, we don not feel we are the best choice of a supplier with the current Maysel booster station, old plant, bad lines and no down time for repairs.
Will Clay Roane get their complaint re opened? Will the Town of Clay be forced into supplying water to the PSD without a written agreement. Does Jim Weimer have another ace up his sleeve? Will another Mayor be appointed into office and change even more game plans? Were these back door dealings in support of Clay Roane PSD at the expense of the Town of Clay. Will new water customers ever be hooked up in the region? Stay tuned!
SCHOOL BOARD MEETING AT LIZESMORE
The Clay County Board of Education met for their regular meeting Tuesday, November 27 at Lizemore Elementary School as they make their round of yearly visits to the schools and the Local School Improvement Councils (LSIC). All board members present - Board President R.B. Legg Jr., Gene King, Scott Legg, Fran King, and David Pierson Jr. A large crowd was present from the Lizemore community, estimate about 145-150 people. R.B. Legg invited the crowd to join him as he offered a prayer, and introduced the board members and administrative staff seated at the table. After calling the meeting to order and approving the agenda with the addition of Marge Bragg to address the Board, Legg paused the meeting for entertainment provided by Lizemore students.
Four Lizemore pre-school AUncle Sams did an excellent job with the Pledge of Allegiance and then sang >Three Cheers for the Red, White, and Blue. The Kindergarten and 1st grade class performed a medley of patriotic songs, followed by the 5th grade class, who work with Kim Hamrick every week learning sign language, singing the >Star Spangled Banner in sign - a very impressive performance. The Lizemore Lionettes majorette corps finished the program with their baton routine done to >Frosty the Snowman. All of the groups received well deserved rounds of applause.
The Board continued their meeting and approved the previous meeting minutes and accepted the resignation of Lizemore teacher Christy Fitzwater, effective immediately. There was a short discussion at the table on the resignation, but it couldn't be heard in the crowed gymnasium. All motions passed unanimously.
R.B. Legg opened the lone bid received for contract bus route 1-C, noting that Mary Holcomb had witnessed the bid being sealed. Henson Legg was the bidder at $1800 per month. The Board discussed that they had previously been paying $1250 per month for that route, but the remainder of their short discussion could not be heard. Action on the bid will be taken at their next meeting.
Lizemore Principal Teresa Morris introduced the Lizemore LSIC members and had a slide presentation on Lizemore programs such as the Accelerated Reader Program, Foster Grandparent Program, Parent Volunteer Program, PAT and PEP, and listed improvements at the school which she credited the excess levy as providing. Morris said student reading levels have improved due to the various reading programs. She praised the parent volunteers and reported that 40 parents had volunteered for the Read Aloud Program in October. As for academic performance at the school, Morris showed that Total Test scores had gone up in grades 3,4 and 5 since 1997 and 1998. She also noted that Lizemore had the best staff and student attendance last month. The end of the presentation Morris devoted to encouraging passage of the excess levy again in January, using much of the information Superintendent Jerry Linkinogger has presented during previous board meetings at other schools. She said school life at Lizemore without the excess levy could mean fewer text books, no activity buses, crowded classrooms, decreased opportunity for School Building Authority funds, etc., and, of course possibly no Lizemore school. Morris said if the levy passes Lizemore will remain open for at least the next five years - guaranteed. Morris, APersonally, I support the levy.
Last on the agenda, Marge Bragg had questions for the Board. Bragg, A I'd like to ask the Board individually - if the levy fails, will you vote to close any of the rural schools? First to respond was Gene King who, after pointing out that he was not up for reelection, talked about previous school closings at Nebo and Brown. Referring to the Nebo closing, King, A...wasn't pleasant to close that school...but those (students) have done well...had a little trouble with the parents...I don't want to hurt nobody.... King said he had faith they would have a levy, but said, A...if the superintendent sees fit...I'll go along with the superintendent...I helped put him in office...yes, then I will.
Fran King spoke next, about the levy and that she supported it feeling that the amount she pays in more taxes was a small price to pay. Referring to the possibility that the levy might fail, AI don't think the people of Clay will let that happen. No clear answer on how she would vote if it does fail.
R.B. Legg, AWe have to pay bills...at one point we were robbing Peter to pay Paul...the board is kinda like a business. If the levy doesn't pass it may force us into deficit again. No clear answer to the question.
David Pierson, A I would look at the numbers...if the numbers show it, then yes. I would look at closing schools as a last resort.
Scott Legg, A I'm not going to close schools just to close schools.. Legg also talked about the levy. (This reporter was unable to hear most of what Legg said due to conversations going on among those present in the gym, but seems no one heard him specifically answer the question.)
Bragg pointed out that several members of the Board hadn't answered the question, and even if parents in those communities supported the levy it was possible that it still would not pass. Bragg, A It's a possibility...How do you decide which school to close?...Is there some criteria, a guideline?...if the levy fails....
No clear answers to these questions from any of the board members, but those folks present were listening, and discussing among themselves what they'd heard, and not heard, from the Board. Meeting adjourned to what looked like a feast prepared by the Lizemore folks. By far, the Lizemore community had the biggest turnout for a Board/LSIC meeting this year. Next meeting of the Board is Monday, December 3, 6:00 p.m., at the administrative office building in Clay.
AMBULANCE AUTHORITY OPENS UP
Clay County Emergency Ambulance Authority met in regular session November 26 at 6 pm with all members present. Four or five sat in the peanut gallery. There is something going on readers! It may be new Chair Bob Ore. It may be the combination of Ore and other Authority members meshing together better. It may be that their backs are against the wall and they have to do something or loose the entire operation. Whatever it is, its long overdue and been much needed for 6 years. There is one other note that needs mentioned before covering the actual meeting. Member Fran King came into the conference room apparently angry about something. Before hand , Joretta Gray was seen outside the Ambulance office, and it was whispered that Ms King had some kind of run in with Gray. Something about Gray telling King how to operate the computer . What ever it was, Ms King was stomping her feet.
Here's goes the most eye opening, open meeting of the year.
Book keeper Marie Haynes reported that she had billed just $71,000.00 this month and since Medicaid was deducting $2300.00 this month for an overpayment from earlier this year, Billing is down again. Note: since the CCEAA receives around 30% of what is billed ( $21,300.00), the months ahead will also be months of little income.
New head of the Ambulance Service, Cookie Johnson, reported: Fola Coal's payments for ambulance service is past due and they are forwarding a check ( $3.00 per person)
soon; one telephone line has been disconnected to save on expenses (that leaves five in service); Chickapee Coal donated a tank of propane ($325.00) for the Lizemore ambulance sub station; a meeting has been set up with Delegate Bill Stemple to get the fuel bill ( purchases from the State Road garage) reduced or eliminated; and, Johnson has talked with the Budget Digest folks in Charleston over spending the $20,000.00 grant as needed and with all invoices going straight to the Capitol instead of the usual practice of the Ambulance Service paying and then getting reimbursed from the state.
It was also reported that the Veteran's Administration was kicking back many invoices and refusing to pay since prior approval for an ambulance transport was not secured. The VA will only pay for ambulance runs if they are medically necessary and a doctor OKs the payment ahead of time. CCEAA member Larry Cole commented that the VA is notorious for that practice while Arlie Fulks retorted that they had been doing that for 30 years. Congresswoman Capito will be contacted on the matter.
Here's a cutey readers, before any more state money can be requested by the CCEAA, Delegate Bill Stemple wants a letter documenting where budget cuts have been made. Hmmmm...
It has been a long standing practice to provide funding for employee certifications in the past. According to CCEAA Member Fran King, several folks have had educational bills paid by the group and have since quit working for the Ambulance Service. Fran said that they signed a contract requiring them to work for the service in lieu of the dollars spent training them. From the peanut gallery came word that a previous board had done away with such a contract. Translation: free ride for some.
Now this one is a little sticky readers. The Authority was trying to get this out in the open but were hampered by confidentiality laws ( they thought). Seems there is a young female employee that has been off on Worker's Compensation for a long period of time and to date the Worker's Comp payout stands at $65,000.00 Yep, we didn't miss type it this time... that's $65,000.00. Additionally, the employee has lost her certification ( license not renewed) as of January 1, 2001. Fran,@ We are not responsible for it! It was also reported that the woman has been awarded a 13 % disability, draws $600.00 per month, and has for some time. Then there was something said about her being offered Alight duty work. Larry Cole, If she doesn't come in, she's gone! Fran, A No certification... that nullifies and voids her contract! During the conversation, no last name was given for the person.
Over the last several years, employees and directors receiving big time Christmas bonuses has been contentious to say the least. Since the cupboards are bare this year, seems that subject will not come up. What has come up is the buying back of vacation time to give the long time employees a little extra jingle this holiday season. Johnson, Some people have lots of vacation time. Larry Cole, Considering the low pay rate here, it may be a good thing to do. Cole then suggested that the vacation hours be bought back but at a discounted rate. Member Arlie Fulks, AIt needs capped.
Side note readers. Fran and Gene King were whispering during this discussion and you could see Gene firing up. Although Fran was whispering , Gene was much louder, One thing I don't like is bills under the table!! Now breaking into the discussion on buying vacation time, Gene the King, I thought we were getting some place! What irritates me .... to see a guy with 12 hours of overtime!! That hurts us! Fran now seizing the moment commented that she had been misquoted ONCE in the paper ( hey pretty good don't you think readers, only one misquote!!), that the ambulance folks have very cushy benefits that, costs a lot and that many employees never get so many extras.
With that out of their systems, the group never seemed to get back on track and decide what to do about buying back vacation time.
The steaming Fran reported on a long past due bill that no one knew about. According to Ms King the employee's health care provider, PEIA, has not been paid for months. King said they owed $9473.04 for the last three months. With the December payment due the 10th of the month, the CCEAA is in deep doodoo so to speak. Note: we just made up the deep doodoo part. Fran also made public that since retired Director Jackie Pierson stayed on the payroll one day past the end of October, the CCEAA is obligated for an entire month of PEIA coverage. On the issue of not paying the PEIA premiums for months, Arlie Fulks, I understand it was swept under the table..
Maybe there was a reason why Ms King was miffed! And maybe it wasn't just Joretta Gray! Fran King, that=s CCEAA secretary/treasurer Fran King reported that the agency's fuel bill has not been paid for months. They buy from the State Road garage. That they still owe for November 2000. Although an occasional bill was sometimes paid, the CCEAA owes nearly $10,000.00 for fuel! Marie Haynes, The bills just keep popping up! Get this folks, if the CCEAA gets the old bills taken care of the State Road people will only sell to the Ambulance folks if they pay a month in advance.
Again, the issue of the yearly budget was discussed with the name Joyce White surfacing. Ms White was the secretary /treasurer for the last several years and was not reappointed to the Authority by the County Commission this past summer. Now 5 months into the new fiscal year, the Clay County Emergency Ambulance Authority has not turned in the state code mandated fiscal budget for the current year. Fran King, This is total chaos.
And then to compound the problems , it was announced that there has been just 66 runs so far this month. Gene King, A Oh Man!@ Translation: Low runs this month means low income later.
Fran's next discovery: discussion on all the Ascrew ups with over payments with employee's FICA accounts. Fran, A Why do we do all this?????
Fran, A Now the humdinger... Fran was getting hotter and hotter as she explained that Ambulance Service checks have not been written consecutively. That some checks had been pulled from the bottom of a box while others were taken from the top. Oh boy! A The numbers are all screwed up! Arlie, A Who wrote the checks? Fran, If an auditor comes in, man, I'll have to beg for mercy! Cole, What happened to those numbers? Marie Haynes, on the audit statement made by Fran, You only [get] to hear what they want you to hear. Haynes appeared to be alerting the group on what was said during the last audit. Getting more riled, Fran, A I can't say what I want to say!! Haynes, Only two people should have access to the computer. Strongly, Gene, WHO LET OTHER PEOPLE COME ON IN? Haynes, They just came in. Mention was made that some checks are still just laying around in the office space.
Oh Boy, look out!! Here it comes!! Gene gave a thumb nail sketch of just before the meeting and as Fran was checking the financials on the CCEAA computer, A Joretta came in and put her off [of the computer]. Ore, We need to put Joretta off. Haynes mentioned that there was a confidentiality issue here with Joretta , a non employee, having access to all the records. Haynes, A We need security on the computer. We don't need every Tom Dick and Harry... Everything is on our computer.. Haynes went on to comment that many people know the current password and have access to the records. About then it was reported no one knew for sure how many keys there are out on the street to the building and offices. Gene King made the motion to change the locks. Joe Beets, A It won't help! Gene, I hate to think they can crawl under the doors!!! Note: During all this, it is unknown if the motion to change the locks and computer password was voted on.
Fran, I don't know how to get it straightened out.... Joretta came in and said this is how we do it.... It's chaos.. The general consensus: the records are in shambles; records have been spilt out of wooden boxes; checks are not matched up with invoices; and and and according to Fran, NO check has been logged into the computer since the middle of September.
Cookie Johnson interjected that the computer had been removed from the dispatcher's area because we had a problem.
After lengthy discussion Ore tried to get back down to business with, Sounds like we have a culprit there someplace... We need to eliminate the culprit. Lock the doors.
Now we're not done yet readers, so take a breather for a second. Those inside the system as well as many folks on the outside have known for years that financial problems as well as management issues have been kept quiet by keeping them away from the public meetings. For years, these issues have been discussed away from the public and now the problems have mushroomed. On the bright side, once out in the open, they can be addressed and corrected.
Now back to the meeting. Fran mentioned that she had received a phone call just minutes of ending the last meeting over a comment attributed to her, the Asweeping of bills under the table. Arlie admitted to saying that one.
As for the contentious issue of paying dispatchers while the county foots the bill for a E 911 dispatching service in Nicholas County, Ms Johnson commented that the payroll will drop and volunteers are dispatching.
Meeting adjourned around 7:15. Is it over? Nope.
With Fran now back in the room and upset so much she couldn't stand still, I have a question. Who gets paid if they are on Workman's Comp? Seems Ms King had unearthed yet another nightmare as she reported finding a $1322.00 reimbursement check for wages paid while someone was on Workman's Comp. NOTE: Now there was a lot of talk happening but it sounded like this: An employee worked for the Ambulance Service while receiving Workers Comp benefit payments! The $1322 check just found was to pay back the over payment of benefits and the check had never been deposited. Still putting it all together readers, the sound is that of a sugar daddy deal just discovered.
| Joe Beets, You are going to get in a lawsuit!! Fran along with Bob Ore at the same time, A I didn't mention any names!! One last note. Somewhere in the meeting Fran commented A.... Well I didn't want to get my fingers broke! With calamity comes change. With change comes a hope that the ambulance service will survive. See you next time.
CLAY COUNTY DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION ROUND UP
As is the case with many secret organizations, Clay County Development Corporation (CDC) did not have enough board members present November 20th to hold their monthly meeting. Those shirking their duties on the CDC Board of Directors were: Eunice Thomas, Glenna Triplett, Cheryl Neal, Mary Fugate, Della Ryder, and Jane Patterson.
Although not enough were present to hold a meeting, some discussion and information was passed on.
Member Peter Triplett asked if the Budget Digest grant dollars had arrived. Janet Fitzwater commented that the CDC had to itemize all expenditures and then they should receive their money in a month or so. Fitzwater, A You have to spend the money before you get the money whether you got the money or not. We'll probably get it next month.
After adjourning the non meeting, Ms Fitzwater handed copies of the new Board of Directors by laws to those in attendance. Chair Earnie Sirk, A That's your new by laws. Fitzwater, There are a few things changed. She went on to say the changes were made during the June General meeting. Member Jimmy Duffield, A What do you want us to do, take these home with us? Sirk, They're yours to keep! The new by laws were less than 2 inch thick and bound in dime store paper covers.
After doing some contemplating and after remembering that the CDC was currently in a court battle with the ousted CDC Chair Herschel Shamblin, Sirk continued All these things at Clay Development go to certified, bona fide board members. I know a little fellow [Herschel Shamblin] over across the road that was declared by the Judge that he was not a member in the general membership nor a member of the regular membership nor had he ever been. Sirk was referring to a court case over two years ago that allowed Herschel Shamblin to stay removed from the CDC Board. Shamblin's attorney in that case was sanctioned by the Judge for doing such a dismal job in the courtroom. Ms Fitzwater realizing what was happening tried to correct Sirk with, A ... If you should happen to go off the Board.. but was cut off by Sirk as he gave the assembled an update on the upcoming December 13 court case against Herschel Shamblin and the already held preliminary hearing before Judge Jack Alsop. The December 13 trial was brought by the CDC against Shamblin and centers on Shamblin not returning his copy of the Board of Directors By Laws after being thrown off the Board. During previous court room testimony, CDC staff stated that the by laws and binder were worth $120.00. Hmmmm... lets see now, this year the by laws about 1/2 inch thick and worth maybe $1.00. Last edition of the same by laws are valued at $120.00. Another Hmmmm.
Sirk, We had our hearing. Our little lawyer called in and Herschel was there representing himself. Of course word got around that this will be dismissed and sit back and let the magistrates handle it.
Here it comes readers, another exact quote from CDC Chair Earnie ( shoot himself in the foot ) Sirk, A Now we got a little judge over there that is highly upset. He said it will go to bench trial... Readers, how do you think the Honorable Jack Alsop will react to Wide Glide calling him Alittle? Make sure someone gives him a copy of this article! Back to Sirk=s comments, A The judge told him the last time that he wouldn't get by with this free ride from now on... Now it's a fact of life that the judge is mad. Watch for the December 13 bench trial to be well attended by past and present members of the CDC.
Sirk, now catching on to what Fitzwater was trying to get out to the few members present, Sirk, All this stuff is yours while you are on the board. It all comes back to the board when you leave.... When a board member was alarmed that she was responsible for the cheapy manual and would have to turn it back in, and as to what would happen if something happened to it, Sirk, There is an excuse for everything if you cant turn it in like... if your dog ate it.
That's all we >ve got this month readers. Is that enough?
From The Office Of Congresswomen Shelley Moore Capito
Washington-On October 12th, mail delivery to Congressional offices in Washington D.C. when a letter laced with anthrax was discovered in the mail system. Since that time new screening measures have been put into place and the U.S. Postal Service will resume the first phase of mail deliveries to Congressional offices on Wednesday, November 28th.
This first phase of service will consist of all 1st class envelopes and flats (envelopes larger than 9x14 but no thicker than 1/2 inch). Delivery of boxes, larger packages, periodicals and catalogues will resume at a later date. Normal mail flow is expected to resume at the first of the year.
Delivery of the mail that has been in storage since October 12, 2001 will begin at a slow pace and its delivery may not be guaranteed due to the ongoing criminal investigation into the anthrax attack.
Your views and suggestions are very important to Congresswoman Capito, whose policy is to answer each and every piece of mail from her constituents. Therefore, persons who sent written letters to Rep. Capito in either October or November but who have not yet received a response should call one of her offices at 304-264-8810 in Martinsburg, 304-925-5964 in Charleston, or 203-225-2711 in Washington D.C.
Congresswoman Capito regrets this inconvenience as she values communication from all of her constituents. She encourages everyone to continue communicating their thoughts and ideas to her through letters, faxes, E-mails, and phone calls.
30 OF GAS AT CCC MEETING
Clay County Commission met in regular session November 27, 10 am , at the Clay County Courthouse. Jimmy Sams presided with Commissioner Butcher at his side. Commissioner Matthew Bragg was off deer hunting. After opening the meeting, Commissioner Sams offered his word of prayer
With only three or so in the peanut gallery, the usual blah, blah, blah, bills paid, minutes approved, budget revisions.....
Now for the better stuff.
Announcement was made that Greenbrier Pipeline will be building a 30 inch, high pressure, gas line through the lower end of the county. A map indicated that the massive line will run from Hope Plant through Bomont, and on into Lizemore as the line makes a straight shot to North Carolina. Clerk Judy Moore knew of no homes being displaced by the project.
Here's the good part. There will be a public utility tax collected on each mile of pipe in the ground. The tax amounts to $8300.00 per mile. According to Ms Moore, the State collects the fees and the county will receive a portion of it although no one knew exactly how much Clay County=s take will amount to. Most felt that the line maybe a transport method for major oil and gas fields recently found in Roane County. Those wells are over 10,000 feet deep.
According to Moore, last year's oil and gas severance tax was up from the previous year. Last year Clay County garnered around $20,000.00 from the fee.
Motion was made and seconded to appoint Jerry Linkinogger and Roger Hanshaw as absentee ballot commissioners during the upcoming January 19th school excess levy election. They will collect the ballots of those in hospitals. From the audience came questions from Paige Willis on the secrecy of absentee ballots. Willis commented that he had always heard reports of people knowing how others had voted. Moore explained that before the law was changed absentee ballots were sent to the polls sealed in two envelopes. Poll Workers checked the name and address written on the outer envelope and if it was not to be challenged for some reason, the outer envelope was removed and the blank inner envelope was deposited in the locked voting cans.
After some thinking, Moore said that if there was just one absentee ballot then it would be possible for the public to know how that person had voted.
Under the new law, voters can vote absentee until the day before the election and all those ballots will be placed in one can at the Courthouse. As for someone needing to vote absentee the day of the election, that or those ballots will be taken to the respective polls and the ballots placed in the cans at the poll.
Finally, the new digital ballot counting machine will be used election night at the Courthouse. Translation: all ballots will be brought to the Courthouse after the polls close and the ballots will be publicly counted in the County Commission room. The election will be held January 19, 2002.
On the long overdue E-911 mapping and addressing of the county to improve response time by emergency service providers, we have an update. Those residents served by the Nebo Post Office now have new 911 addressees and many of the information letters have been sent back to the Courthouse. According to Ms Moore, she has received only one telephone call on the matter. According to Emergency Services Director Paige Willis, the next area of the county to receive new addresses is the small portion of the county served around Chloe and Walker. The slow, ever so slow process that was to have been completed years ago appears to be moving on like a herd of turtles.
Commissioner Butcher asked why gasoline prices in this county are so much higher than in areas around the county like Summersville. Butcher brought up that a letter needs to be sent to Shell Oil which now services the GO Mart accounts in the state.
During budget making last summer, County Commission made it very clear that County finances would be very tight this year and there was a very real chance that one county employee from each office in the Courthouse may have to be laid off January 1 of this coming year. As an update to that dismal prospect, Mr. Sams informed all that by using a bunch of coal severance money and hanging on to the general account funds, the lay offs have been averted for now.
On another matter, Sams read a letter from the town of Clay on the proposed agreement with Clay Roane PSD. The agreement, when signed by both parties would allow the town to supply water to the Clay Roane service area and thereby lift the long standing water moratorium on new water connections. Sams, A I don't think this will happen.. Sams was referring to part of the agreement that called for the town to have one member on the new and improved regional PSD Board of Directors. Butcher seemed to be in agreement with Sams over the issue of representation with,@ There's nothing we can do..
To date , Clay Roane PSD has not signed onto the agreement and the water moratorium remains in place.
On a related issue, County Commission discussed a recent change voted on and passed by the town which would allow the new regional PSD to build the new water plant IF, and Only IF, they agreed to take possession of the town's sewer plant. Butcher raised concerns that the project was too far along now to make such a major change. Sams expressed concerns that the change may further delay the building of the new water plant for the area. Both were reminded by a member of the peanut gallery ( the guy sort of looked like a young Robert Redford) that Jim Weimer from the WV Public Service Commission had told members of Town Council any passed ordinance could be changed or amended by the Council at any time. With no real reply to that statement, Butcher went on to say that when folks at the PSC were told the town was changing the game plan by adding the sewer plant in the deal, the PSC gang's response was AHallelujah!!
As a quiet meeting came to an end, Commissioner Sams asked CCEAA Chair Bob Ore how things were going at the Ambulance Service. Ore responded with, I don't want to talk about that. I'm afraid someone will sue me. I just read the Communicator to find out what's going on. In a more serious note, Ore, We've got our difficulties with the Ambulance service.
REGIIONAL PSD MEETS
On November 27th, the County Commission appointed advisory committee for the soon to be formed Regional PSD, met at the Courthouse, at 1:00 pm. The group is the first step in forming the new region wide governing board and is charged with organizing.
Now just a note. Sometimes this paper may have made light of the efforts of Jim Weimer with the WV Public Service Commission. Weimer is the PSC front man whose job it is to get the long stalled water plant back on track. We've even given him a nick name. We've been calling him Mr. Spark Plug. On still other occasions, we've misspelled the gentleman's name... from Weimer to Weiner. At times, his efforts have been challenged by members of the community as well as elected and appointed folks. Have we been too hard on the fellow? Read this article for a little insight on the subject.
Although the meeting was scheduled to start at 1 pm , Jerry Bakker from the WV PSC didn't show until 1:26 pm. With all in place, including representatives from the town of Clay ( Sally Legg and Betty Murphy), the PSC called meeting finally got under way around 1:30 pm. Mr. Bakker ran the show, aided by Ingred Ferrell.
Bakker opened up with discussion on the mid stream change made by Clay Town Council on November 5. Town Council wants the Regional PSD to now assume ownership of the Anot working too good, often broke down, state of the art , high dollar, three year old sewer plant owned by the town. Currently, the Regional PSD is slated for operation of a water plant only. Bakker felt that it wouldn=t be any big deal for the County Commissions in Roane and Clay County to grant additional authority so the PSD could operate the sewage plant . Bakker even said that it was Aa natural next step@ for the PSD to be in the sewage business on a regional basis.
Concerning the sewer plant and the give away to the PSD, there was one thing that Mr. Bakker DID NOT know as he spoke favorably on adding the sewer plant into the authority of the Regional PSD. That one thing you ask? ... There was nobody in the room that even remotely supports such a deal for the town. After three years of operational night mare, all the local leaders know: the sewer plant does not operate as originally planned; the plant is far too big for such a small area; the debt is so huge on the sewer plant it can never be paid off; and just to keep the current level of service at the plant will mean even higher, much higher, rates for the customers. General consensus: it's a boat anchor and the kiss of death for whoever owns and operates it. With no decisions made on the subject, the discussion turned to water line extensions in the county.
Heres where the Weimer part comes into play readers.
Keith King asked Mr. Bakker about extending water lines in the county before any new water plant ( get with it readers, we have changed gears, we're now talking about water, not sewer) is built. Bakker felt that the best course of action would be to consolidate the local PSDs into the one larger Regional PSD before starting any extensions. King, Weimer is suggesting that we go ahead with the extensions.
Here it is readers,... Bakker laughed. The crowd caught on real quick and they too laughed. Ms Ferrell reminded all that by adding water line extensions on the Clay Plant, the plant would have to run 23 hours per day. As for the Weimer notion of adding on more now, Ms Ferrell, AMr. Weimer is rethinking that. More laughs. Ferrell continued on with the notion that someone has to be in charge. Translation: Consolidate the PSD first ,then get things moving.
Commissioner Sams reminded all that the money is in place to lay the lines to Tucker's bottom and Lizemore. No deal. Both Ferrell and Bakker contended the only way is the right way and that right way is to get the PSDs consolidated.
Ferrell asked : when is the old town water plant going to be sold off? With no answers to be heard, Keith King, I have been hearing everything.
A new clinker has been added to the slow poke pace. According to Mr. Bakker, all local PSDs will have to go back and get full blown audits before anything can move ahead on building a new water plant. Previous to this meeting, all PSDs were under the opinion that a Acompilation was all that would be needed. Bakker explained that a full audit looks at the dollars collected and where that money went. This revelation made mouths gap wide open. A new clinker has emerged!
Discussion turned to the town of Clays unsigned wholesale purchase agreement with Clay Roane PSD. NOTE: Other details elsewhere in this paper. The central dispute seemed to be with the town wanting Clay Roane to maintain and or replace the town's old Maysel holding tank. Both PSC reps objected to this being added into the agreement.
Again Mr. Weimer's name surfaced as Ms Murphy told of some behind the scenes doings inspired by Jim Weimer. One such was the time when Weimer told Procious PSD water operator Jennifer Traub to report to work at the town of Clay water plant without any written agreement between the two government groups. Lefty Summers, A That's what he told me, too! Ms Ferrell , He can't dictate that!!@ All roared with approving laughter.
| The meeting lasted almost an hour and absolutely no decisions were made other than the consensus on Jim Weimer by most of the locals present. And that consensus? Just what Paige Willis said months ago to Mr. Weimer.... AYou=re starting to sound like an aluminum siding salesman!@ As the meeting ended, even Keith King openly commented,@ Sounds like Jim Weimer is in a heap of trouble.@ Next meeting: January 15, 2002.
In just a few days Town Council will hold their regular monthly meeting. Sure to come up is the Helen Morris and Dave Derby request to appoint a new mayor for the town. Recorder Betty Murphy has served as acting mayor since Glen Nichols left the post to seek employment in Ohio.
So.. who will it be? Morgan Gibson had his name in the hat but later had it pulled by Council person Arthur Jarrett. Glen Nichols, now back from Ohio, submitted a resume for his old $500.00 per month position. Word on the street has it that there will be at least one more candidate to throw his hat in the ring. Be sure to attend the meeting next week, the first Tuesday of the month at 4 pm. Should be a good one.
During the Commission meeting, November 27, one agenda item was not discussed. Number 12 on the sheet was : Request by Parks and Recreation for the County Commission to help with the Town Christmas Party.
The request was for $200.00 to buy gift bags and hot chocolate. After the meeting, Commissioner Sams said instead of the Commission supplying the money, donations will be collected from the Courthouse.