Commissioners Approve Matters
A regular meeting of the Tyler County Commission was called to order at 9 a.m. on Jan. 22. The meeting began with exonerations from Tyler County Assessor Lisa Jackson, who told commissioners there was nothing to report. They then voted on and approved the fiduciary report given by the County Clerk Neil Archer.
The first article of business covered was discussion of a new 911/Office of Emergency Management building. This was presented by Director Josh Fulks who reportedly wants to begin the long process. It was said the building would need to be at least 3,500 square feet and would require high-speed internet for the mapping system. Fulks said the most ideal area is adjacent to the senior citizen building in Middleborne. However, Commissioner John Stender told Fulks he had inquired about that area and received a less than positive response. Stender advised the director to make an appearance at the next meeting involving the senior citizen building for further discussion.
It was also reported the former sheriff’s office had been a possibility. However, it was said this building is in need of many repairs, in addition to window replacement.
Fulks said windows at the 911 center are required to be bulletproof, and repair alone would cost $200,000. After all repairs are made to the building, it is the belief a new building would be less costly in the end.
In other business, Commissioner John Stender reported Prosecuting Attorney Luke Furbee had reviewed a right-of-way contract between the county and MonPower. It was noted previous concerns, regarding a bridge, had been addressed, and there should be no issues. It was also noted an easement was required to be signed, in order to approve the contract. At this time, Commissioner Mike Smith left the room due to a conflict of interest. A vote was then taken, and the motion was carried.
The commission also discussed converting all of the county’s credit cards to state purchasing cards. Commissioner Eric Vincent reported the change would have to be added to policy.
Commissioner Stender then gave an update on the county’s 4-H grounds, reporting the doors and windows have been installed, and the drainage system was in the process of being implemented. An electric pole was expected to be moved later in the week.
Following this, Vincent reported a letter of support was needed for Lee Day Report Center. This was not a request for funds but rather a letter, to accompany a grant application, supporting all the center does. The commissioners discussed the letter before voting, and the motion was carried.
Also requiring approval was a quote from Johnson Boiler Works in regards to radiator repairs and replacements. There is reportedly a leak, and the cost for the repairs and the supplies totals to $4,600. A vote was taken, and the motion to approve the quote was carried.
Vincent also reported there was a scheduling conflict due to an upcoming budget prep meeting in Bridgeport on Feb. 26. The commissioners as well as many county staff members would be attending the meeting. A motion to change the Feb. 26 commission meeting to Feb. 27 was made, and carried.
Commissioner Smith reported that although the county’s development authority was working “aggressively” on the broadband grant, the process would not happen overnight. He reported the matter was progressing smoothly.
Smith also reported that an employee at the Tyler County Museum was requesting artifacts from the County Home. Stender told all in attendance he had contacted “Salvage Dawgs” – a company that restores and sells historic structures – and was asked to email pictures of the home before the company would make a decision to work on the County Home. Therefore, the commissioners concluded they could salvage and deliver some artifacts to the museum beforehand.
Following Smith, Emergency Manager Director Tom Cooper provided the Award Letter for the 2018 EMPG SAR grant. It was reported this is a special grant to cover search and rescue. A motion to sign the letter was made, and subsequently carried.
Vincent then reported a few in-house budget revisions, which required approval. The commissioners voted, and the motion was passed.
While taking public comment, Sheriff Brian Weigle reported that the sheriff’s department is working to build an in-house Special Response Team (SRT). This is a team trained to respond to high risk situations, and the sheriff reported that the county having its own would be beneficial. Currently, Tyler County is involved in a joint SRT team; Weigle said his department doesn’t wish to break away from working in conjunction with other counties, but he believes the department should be equipped with knowledge on how to handle all situations.
Director Cooper asked Weigle to keep him informed of the progression of this team, as he would like to be of assistance.
In other business, Luke Peters provided the commissioners with information regarding the Route 18 South Water Project. Peters gave the commissioners a total and informed them that this was pending approval at a progress meeting on Jan. 23. A motion was made to approve the drawdown, and the motion was carried. Upon questioning by Stender, Peters also reported that a fire hydrant for the 4-H grounds would be provided.
Peters then gave an update on the Broadband Grant Project. It was said that a recent meeting was held with Thompson and Litton who had collected data on the matter. Peters reported the first objective is to get Klondike Tower operational, and that a partnership with Doddridge County is being considered.
Peters said an upcoming deadline is in April, and the TCDA must show the endeavor would make a profit. He noted he believes the project would be a good investment, as it will put Tyler County ahead and might attract jobs. A conference call is being scheduled with the commissioners and those involved in the project, for further discussion.
Following this discussion, the commissioners approved the bills. Consequent of payment of the bills, the meeting was adjourned.