Commission highlights good works
Good works and goodwill highlighted Tuesday’s meeting of the Tyler County Commission.
Among several items discussed, Melody Glasscock, Family Resource Network director addressed the commission concerning the National Youth Leadership Initiative, a pilot program in West Virginia whose purpose is drug, alcohol and tobacco education/prevention for youth.
Six Tyler County youth are participating in this program. They are Isaiah Cassinelli, Hope Stewart, Mijah Charkawi, Danielle Seckman, Ryley Warner and Sarah Campbell.
The group travelled to Canaan Valley recently with advisor Connie Stewart to attend a workshop there. Cassinelli was chosen as a state representative on the committee to improve the program, with an opportunity to participate at the national level.
A four day trip to a leadership training workshop in Washington, D.C. is in the planning stages. At the workshop, the group will participate in a plenary session, which will give them the opportunity to interact with all five legislative representatives from West Virginia. While grant funding will cover the cost of the advisor and one youth’s expenses on this trip, the FRN director noted that a sponsor was needed for one participant. Family Resource Network and the Board of Education are each sponsoring one student, and Glassock asked the County Commission to sponsor the remaining participant.
“These programs help a whole lot,” remarked commission President Charles “Pork” Smith, adding that the commission would be happy to sponsor the remaining spot on the roster.
Also addressing Commission on Tuesday was Lynn Garber, Community Resources director. The focus of her comments covered the final report on stimulus funding spent by Community Resources. A total of $17,601 was spent on 59 individuals: $847 on the Learn to Earn program, which provides “fast-track” certifications (CNA, truck driving, etc.) to expedite participants entry into the work force, and its adjunct program, Labor Aid, which provides materials necessary for those people who are in the process getting employment.
The Care for Clunkers program provided $972 for necessary vehicle repairs for eligible participants, and over $2,000 was provided in rent and utilities assistance.
The bulk of the funding, over $13,000, was spent to provide dental, vision and medical care. “This is the most largely needed in our service area,” said Garber. She also informed commission that Community Resources is currently seeking other funding for the programs, noting that $16,000 had been granted to date for the Cash for Clunkers and dental/medical programs. Other Community Resource programs such as weatherization and the CHOTO housing program were topics of discussion. With funding the weatherization program is currently able to use poverty income guidlines at the 200 percent mark, which drops to 125 percent of income guidelines without said funding.
Garber concluded her presentation by remarking that new Executive Director, Greg Stevens, has the agency “moving forward in many positive ways.”
Ductwork problems at magistrate court and the prosecuting attorney’s offices were another topic covered in Tuesday’s meeting. Work had been discussed and approved at an earlier meeting but to date, no improvements have been made. “It needs to be done,” remarked President Smith.
The commission approved cleaning and replacing filters as needed.
Mike Griffin spoke on behalf of the Alma Emergency Squad, requesting funds to cover a budget deficit in the department. The Brick Street (insurance) bill was the main issue and commission granted funds to be moved in order to cover expenses.
Other budget adjustments were submitted and approved by commission. The meeting was then adjourned.
Those present at Tuesday’s commission meeting were: Commission Vice President John Stender, Charles “Pork” Smith, Sheriff Earl P. Kendle, Jr., County Clerk Lora Thomas, County Clerk-elect Teresa Hamilton, Lynn Garber, Melody Glasscock, Katrina Byers, Mike Griffn, and Tyler County Assessor Jack Hayes.