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Tyler County Commission Discuss Light Agenda

By Randy Rutherford - Staff Writer | Apr 21, 2021

Tyler County Commission held its regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday, April 13, 2021 at 9 AM. Commissioner Eric Vincent offered prayer which was followed by the Pledge of Allegiance led by Commissioner Mike Smith. Following the approval of the minutes from March 23, 2021, the approval of Exonerations from Tyler County Assessor Lisa Jackson and the approval of the Fiduciary report from County Clerk Neil A. Archer, the commission proceeded with the agenda.

First up was Susie Scharf, Executive Director of the Lighthouse CAC, requesting approval for a funding request made at last month’s meeting. The funds are for needed renovations to the new home of the Lighthouse CAC in the amount of $50,000. Susie explained the CAC’s decision of moving their location from Paden City to New Martinsville. She said they worked very hard to find a location in Paden City; however, the available properties were very expensive. With the help of the Wetzel County Commissioners, and their donation of $50,000, the CAC was able to find an affordable property located in the former Dr. Emch building.

Susie went on to explain that in the 13 year history of the Lighthouse CAC, they have grown from one full-time staff member to four and had outgrown their former location. Also in the last five years they’ve seen an increase of 355% in cases, and in 2020 51% of the cases were in Tyler County with the other 49% in Wetzel County.

In the last year her organization has seen over 100 children through forensic interviews of which 70% were exposed to some abusive situation.

This growth in case numbers and the addition of full time staff members required them to look for a larger space. The goal of the Lighthouse CAC is to properly provide a child friendly, clean and safe environment for children in Tyler and Wetzel Counties that are suffering trauma from abuse.

Sheriff Brian Weigle thanked the CAC for what they are doing. Sheriff Weigle added, “When kids come into the Sheriff’s office, they are intimidated and often times very scared because of the surroundings. The CAC provides the environment to allow the kids to open up to the staff members so that important information is not missed.”

Susie also presented estimates to the Commissioners for the expected work to be done in the building’s renovation..

Commissioners approved the funding based on contractors submitting invoices for renovations as they occur to the Commissioners for payment.

Commissioners next approved the 2021-2022 budget. Also approved was the annual fire alarm and extinguisher inspection performed by Brewer and Company at a cost of $500 per year. This service will inspect the fire extinguishers and the entire alarm system.

David Barrick, representing the National Day of Prayer, requested May 6, 2021 to be designated as National Day of Prayer in Tyler County. Mr. Barrick went on to explain that in 1952 the United States Congress and President Harry Truman started the National Day of Prayer, and it was to be recognized on the first Thursday in May nationwide. Participants may gather on the courthouse steps, with masks being optional but social distance spacing required. Commissioners approved his request.

There was no one present for the public comment so the commissioners moved on to the approval of the bills and budget revisions. Following the approval of both the meeting was adjourned at 9:30. The next regularly scheduled meeting for the Tyler County Commission is Tuesday, April 27, 2021 at 9 AM in the in the Courthouse Commission Chambers.