Tyler County Commission met yesterday for their regular meeting, with all members in attendance.
Commissioners approved board members for the Tyler Co. Planning Commission and Tyler Co. Development Authority for the Jan. 1, 2012 - Dec. 31, 2014 (three year) term. Those approved are Mayor Dave Fox, John Hopkins, Robert Lowther, and William Roberts.
Terry L. Wiley was approved to fill in as a replacement for the unexpired term of Christina Richmond, who was terminated from the position. Wiley is the owner of Potential, the Historic Gaslight Theater, and the Gold Derrick Gallery of Sistersville. The term runs for the period of one year (Jan. 1, 2012 - Dec. 31, 2012).
Troy Smith, Transportation Director, and Jeff Davis, Financial Manager/Treasurer for Tyler County Schools, addressed commission concerning the proposed construction of a new bus garage for the county.
"The board would like to build a new bus garage," said Davis. "It's desperately needed, but we don't want to bankrupt the county by building it."
Davis went on to explain there are issues concerning the location of the building site, which is partially located in a floodplain area.
"At this point, excavation costs are what's killing the project," explained Davis. In order to build in the chosen location, landfill would have to be used to bring the project up to code for insurance purposes.
"What are the restrictions on building on fill?" asked Commission President Charles "Pork" Smith.
"It has to be done properly. You have to be certain you are out of the floodplain, and it can be a headache," said Davis. "Otherwise, all our efforts would be for nothing," he added.
The current garage, while serviceable, is unable to accommodate all the operations entailed in servicing and maintaining equipment.
"Well, this project is still in the study phase," commented President Smith. "We will take matters under consideration at a further time." Commission thanked Davis and Smith for their presentation.
In other matters, Tyler County Sheriff Earl P. Kendle, Jr. addressed commission with issues the department has been having with P-Cards. "We don't want to violate policy," said Kendle. "We are not intentionally doing so."
Kendle went on to explain to commission that certain departmental activities fall into an area where there is no other option but to use the cards for meals or other expenditures. These activities, such as mental hygiene runs, often take 8 hours or more to accomplish. The current policy does not provide for meals unless the trip is an overnight one.
"At first, we thought it was going to be great, having the P-Card to cover expenses," said Kendle. "But now, it seems like it's creating some problems, as well. I would like to address this with commission at the next meeting, and see if we can come to some kind of resolution."
"We'll work on it at the next meeting," promised President Smith. "Bring us your documentation, and we'll see what can be done."
"We have some budget policies and travel expenses and things of that nature that need to be worked on," added Eric Vincent, County Commissioner.
Tom Cooper, Director of the Office of Emergency Management, spoke to commission and presented members with the 2011 EMP grant (Emergency Management Performance grant) for approval and signature. Commission approved the request. Cooper also informed commission the funding for 2010 EMP grant was on its way, and requested commission consider using the money for the purchase of a new OEM vehicle to replace the current one, (a 1999 Jeep). Commissioners indicated they would consider the request.
Also underway is the acquisition of grant funds to be used to purchase an all-terrain vehicle for OEM use. Grant funds in the amount of $32,000 have been approved through the Dept. of Homeland Security for the purchase of the ATV, which will be used in search and rescue and other activities.
Under budget revisions, several item transfers were approved, including a reimbursement of funds in the amount of $14,652.67 (total) for the May elections, from the State of West Virginia.
Commissioner John Stender told those present the County Clerk's office was doing a "great job" handling the influx of abstractors in the county offices. "I want to compliment them for the way they're taking care of the added workload," said Stender. "Other counties have not been as well organized as our clerk's office."
An earlier request by the county's Volunteer Fire Departments concerning the placement of a levy on an upcoming ballot was tabled until further details were forthcoming.
"We need a lot more information before we can get the ball rolling on this request," said President Smith. "I'll notify the department heads and let them know what we require."
It was also noted the clock maintenance at the courthouse was currently underway. The county courthouse clock is a rare type of clock with an internal mechanism. The company performing the maintenance on the timepiece is photographing the internal workings of the clock and will be added to a website for viewing, noted Commissioners.
Payment of bills was authorized by commission, who then adjourned the meeting. Those present included Commissioners Eric Vincent, John Stender, and Charles "Pork" Smith, Sheriff Earl P. Kendle, Jr., County Clerk Teresa Hamilton, Deputy Clerk Amy Glover, Tom Cooper, OEM Director, Jack Hayes, Assessor, Jeff Davis, Troy Smith, and Prosecuting Attorney D. Luke Furbee.