Deputy Hire Approved
The Wetzel County Commission met Tuesday, Jan. 18 and agreed to Sheriff Mike Koontz’s request to hire another deputy for Wetzel County. The new deputy will be hired on a 21 turn shift complete with uniform, vehicle, health care, weapons and all other items deemed necessary to complete his duties. The cost of the expenditure is estimated to be $110,000.
“I think the main reason is that this is a safety issue. There will be two deputies out per shift. This day and age it’s not safe for one guy to be out around the county” added Commissioner Bob Gorby.
The sheriff’s department had also previously requested telephone service in an office space located in Hundred’s city hall. The office will be used by the sheriff’s department in an effort to extend service throughout the county and to be more accessible through better communication. Since cell phone service isn’t always reliable in parts of the county, the commission passed a motion for the installation of a landline. The installation fee will be $79 and there will be a monthly charge of $39.99 thereafter.
“We appreciate the town of Hundred to cooperate with the department. I think it will benefit them a good deal, particularly in light of the closing of the state police barracks,” mentioned Commissioner Larry Lemon.
Sharron Thomas, of the Wetzel County Chamber of Commerce, requested permission to use the county’s Mollohan Center for two upcoming events. During the last week of April there will be a community awards dinner in which this year’s focus will be on business. There will still be many familiar awards, such as Business Owner of the Year and Educator of the Year, but there will also be a few more awards to hand out, such as Most Improved Business. Thomas mentioned that there will be an event held on Sept. 12 for an entrepreneural pitch. This will be the second year in a row that the entrepreneur pitch has been held. Thomas stated that last year there were seven applicants, and of those seven, three have joined the chamber and two have started their own businesses. The commissioners agreed to waive the rental fees of the Mollohan Center for these two events.
The commission was given time to review the new proposal for the Air Evac Lifeteam’s medical flight coverage plan for Wetzel County. A motion passed to renew the policy for the 2017 year, making it the fourth year in a row of Air Evac coverage. The policy covers all residents of Wetzel County at no cost and coverage is extended to Monroe County, Ohio, Washington County, Ohio, as well as Tyler, Marshall, Marion, Monongalia, Harrison, Ohio, Wood and Doddridge Counties in West Virginia. It was noted that public officials are not permitted to receive the free coverage due to the code of ethics, so they must purchase their own coverage.
A motion passed to reappoint the following members to the Wetzel County Building Commission: J.B. Bridgeman, Nelson Hachem, Frederick E. Wilcox, William Lemley, and Earl Yost.
Lastly it was stated that the commission had recently attended a West Virginia Ethics workshop where one of the main points of focus was making sure meeting agendas are done to proper specifications. The ethics committee emphasized that the commission must adhere to the regulations in the ethics commission by listing items on the agenda in a certain amount of time. The agenda must be set and made available two business days before the regular meeting. Therefore, the normal deadline would be Thursday at 4 p.m. If it is a holiday weekend, then the deadline would be Wednesday. Items may still be placed on the agenda after Thursday; however, the commission may not take action on the item since it failed to meet the deadline. If the commission does not follow these particular guidelines, they could be subject to several civil penalties.