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  • Government News

    Government News

    68 news in this category

    1. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      Tammy Tincher, President of the Greenbrier County Commission and a prominent advocate within the National Association of Counties (NACo), delivered compelling testimony before the Subcommittee today, emphasizing the pivotal role played by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Brownfields Program in rejuvenating communities, both urban and rural, across the nation. This hearing, presided over by Chair Johnson and Ranking Member Tonko, focused on the critical significance of the Brownfields Program to counties and the pivotal part counties play in brownfield redevelopment efforts.
      In her opening remarks, Ms. Tincher expressed her gratitude for the opportunity to address the Subcommittee, recognizing the substantial impact the EPA Brownfields Program has on safeguarding the environment, public health, and bolstering local economies. She also acknowledged Chair Rodgers and Ranking Member Pallone for their leadership in advancing this crucial issue at the full committee level.
      With Greenbrier County, West Virginia, serving as her home base, Ms. Tincher serves in various leadership and advocacy capacities for NACo, including Vice Chair of the Rural Action Caucus and Chair of the Membership Standing Committee. Her testimony, therefore, carried significant weight as she spoke on behalf of NACo.
      The heart of Ms. Tincher's testimony centered on the transformative potential of the EPA Brownfields Program. She articulated that this program has consistently proven itself as a vital tool for local governments grappling with vacant and abandoned sites. The redevelopment of these sites, according to Ms. Tincher, holds the key to reinvigorating entire communities and stimulating their economies.
      Ms. Tincher passionately conveyed the multifaceted benefits of brownfields redevelopment, emphasizing that it can stimulate economic growth, safeguard public health, and protect the environment, all while generating well-paying jobs. Across the nation, both urban and rural counties regard the EPA Brownfields Program as an indispensable catalyst for the revitalization of such sites.
      In her closing remarks, Ms. Tincher expressed deep gratitude to the Subcommittee for the opportunity to testify, emphasizing that counties widely recognize the EPA Brownfields Program as an integral component of the intergovernmental partnership aimed at driving economic development, job creation, environmental protection, and public health.
      In a concluding call to action, Ms. Tincher urged the Subcommittee to reauthorize the Brownfields Program, underlining the importance of its continued support in community revitalization efforts.
      Ms. Tincher's compelling testimony sheds light on the indispensable role played by the EPA Brownfields Program in transforming derelict sites into thriving hubs of economic activity and environmental restoration. As this issue gains prominence on Capitol Hill, it remains to be seen how lawmakers will respond to her impassioned plea for continued support and reauthorization of this essential program.
      Witness Testimony: https://d1dth6e84htgma.cloudfront.net/09_27_23_ENV_Testimony_Tincher_d55032ab2e.pdf
      Source: https://energycommerce.house.gov/events/environment-manufacturing-and-critical-materials-subcommittee-legislative-hearing-revitalizing-america-through-the-reauthorization-of-the-brownfields-program
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    2. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      The City of Lewisburg has taken proactive steps to ensure the safety of its residents by issuing a system-wide Boil Water Advisory on Tuesday, August 22, 2023. This advisory comes in response to a 12-inch mainline leak repair, aimed at maintaining the integrity of the water supply.
      Officials from the City of Lewisburg have announced that the Boil Water Advisory is expected to remain in effect until Thursday, August 24, 2023. The advisory entails that all customers must exercise caution when using tap water for consumption and cooking until the advisory is officially lifted.
      The City's Water Plant can be reached at (304) 647-5585 for any questions or concerns related to the Boil Water Advisory. Residents are encouraged to adhere to the advisory and to boil water before using it for consumption or cooking purposes.
      As a reminder, the City of Lewisburg will not provide a potable water tanker at this time. Residents are encouraged to stay informed through official City communication channels and are urged to comply with the Boil Water Advisory for their own safety and well-being.
      https://nixle.us/ENTGX?_ga=2.248851598.820771608.1692715984-684265108.1692715984
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    3. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      We want to send a big congratulations to two members of the Ronceverte Police Department. Alex Williams is our newest patrolman. He is a new graduate from the West Virginia State Police Academy and we’re excited to have him. Robert Alkire II is now our new lieutenant in a much deserved promotion. Thank you for your service to the citizens of Ronceverte!
      Pictured left to right: Police Chief Jerry Hopkins, Mayor Deena Pack, Lieutenant Robert Alkire II, and Patrolman Alex Williams.

      https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=571484978422931&set=a.199518955619537
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    4. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      The Rupert Water Department will be conducting fire hydrant flushing on the following dates: October 2nd, October 4th, and October 6th. We kindly request that you refrain from doing laundry on these days to prevent potential water discoloration that could damage clothing.
      On October 2nd, all streets located to the north of Route 60 and all streets west of Anjean will be affected by the flushing.
      On October 4th, all streets situated to the south of Route 60 and all streets east of Anjean will be impacted by the flushing.
      Then, on October 6th, all streets from the intersection of Big Mountain Road to Laurel Lodge will be subjected to hydrant flushing.
      If you have any inquiries or require further information, please do not hesitate to contact us at 304-392-6344. Your understanding and cooperation during this maintenance activity are greatly appreciated.

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    5. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      Greenbrier Humane Society President, Jennifer Runyon, delivered the 2022 annual report to the Greenbrier County Commission, sharing the organization's recent achievements and initiatives. In her presentation, Runyon highlighted the year 2022 as the "Puppy Year," in which the Greenbrier Humane Society (GHS) received over 100 puppies, significantly higher than their average of one to two litters per year.
      In addition to the influx of puppies, GHS also received more than 522 dogs and 955 cats surrendered throughout the year. However, Runyon noted that the number of dog surrenders has decreased compared to previous years, with owner surrenders for dogs at 70% and cats at 67%. This positive trend could be attributed to the counseling available to pet owners and the spay and neuter voucher program offered by GHS.
      Moreover, GHS has partnered with local food pantries to provide food for dogs and cats, ensuring that animals can remain in their homes even during financial hardships. This initiative has contributed to the organization's success in helping more than 25,782 dogs and cats between 2009 and 2022, without having to euthanize any animals for space reasons in the past nine years.
      In 2022, GHS spayed nearly 1,175 animals, bringing the total number of dogs and cats fixed to 33,225. The organization has spent over $1,000,000 to spay and vaccinate local animals, helping to control the pet population and promote responsible pet ownership.
      Commissioner Rose acknowledged the remarkable progress made by GHS and the impact of the spay and neuter program in reducing the number of animals euthanized yearly. With 10 to 12 staff members and over 100 volunteers, GHS continues to train and engage new volunteers and make pets available for adoption on their Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/greenbrierhumanesociety
      Overall, Jennifer Runyon's report highlighted the Greenbrier Humane Society's significant strides in promoting animal welfare and responsible pet ownership in the community. To learn more about GHS's initiatives and achievements, visit their website. https://www.greenbrierhumane.org/
      Image Courtesy of Greenbrier County Courthouse. 
      County Commission Regular Meeting. https://fb.watch/jg-kndl40M/
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    6. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      The County Commission held its regular meeting, which began with the settlement of seven estates.
      The meeting then moved on to new business, which included the opening of bids for the new health department addition project. The Commission received one bid, coming in at $2,710,360. The committee made a motion to have the architect review the documentation before making a decision. The committee also discussed several grant applications that will provide funds to the Sheriff's Department and Prosecutors Office. Additionally, the committee applied for a courthouse security grant to cover the cost of new metal detectors, which are nearly $15,000. The committee also signed the Humane Society Agreement for 2023-2024.
      The committee also reminded everyone about the Flag Day ceremony that will take place at noon this Friday at the courthouse, which is being organized by the Children's Home Society.
      https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?ref=notif&v=999427224555124
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    7. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      In a routine yet critical meeting, the Greenbrier County Commission tackled a variety of issues pertinent to the county's governance on December 26, 2023. The meeting commenced with a customary invocation and the pledge of allegiance, setting a respectful tone for the session.
      Fiduciary supervisor Cindy Alley presented settlements for seven estates: Rosemary Eve Bugus, Bernice Ellen Johnston, Robert Lee Davis, Betty Jean Brown, Sylvia Ann Williams, Freddie Keith Baston, and Roy Sherman Perry. The commission approved these settlements without amendments.
      In the absence of the county clerk, Kelly oversaw the presentation of financial requests. Notable approvals included funds for Melodon River Trail, Green Bay Valley Theater, and Alderson Main Street. The total financial requests amounted to $52,069.86, all of which were approved.
      Two budget revisions were proposed and accepted during the meeting. The first involved an increase in prosecutor travel expenses, while the second concerned the allocation of VOCA funds for the sheriff's department. Both revisions were approved unanimously.
      The Commission approved the rehire of Billy Mitchell as Deputy Sheriff, acknowledging his past service. Franklin Campbell's application for part-time employment at the Greenbrier 911 Center was also approved.
      Additionally, the separation of employment for Lucas Kessler from the Sheriff's Department was confirmed, along with the retirement of Janet King from the prosecutor's office. Steven Simmons was promoted to the position of Greenbrier County Building Code official following the retirement of Bob Ford.
      The proposed project budget for the Greenbrier County Gig Ready Project was approved without any changes. The total budget amounted to $17,254,650, incorporating state funds and county matches.
      The Commission greenlit a network design amendment for the Quinnwood area broadband project, involving an additional cost of $41,000. The funds will be reallocated from one budget line to pay invoices incurred by the Internet Service Provider (ISP). This decision was made with the understanding that the ISP requires this documentation before moving forward.
      The meeting concluded with the Commission expressing optimism for the future and a commitment to serving the best interests of Greenbrier County. Decisions made during this session are expected to have a lasting impact on the county's administrative, financial, and technological landscape in the coming year.
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    8. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      Construction began several years ago on the Greenbrier County Courthouse in Lewisburg, West Virginia. The historic building, which dates back to 1837, underwent extensive renovations to modernize and preserve its architectural heritage. During the renovation, the former jail was demolished, bringing joy to former prisoners. Additionally, a historical Sears house was moved to a nearby location as the county began to focus on the $10 million, three-story annex.
      Now, as construction on the annex is wrapping up, courthouse officials are preparing to move into the new annex while renovations on the old courthouse and courtrooms begin. The project is ahead of schedule, according to county commissioners. 
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    9. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      The Greenbrier County Sheriff's Department is reaching out to the community for assistance in locating Trinity Aaron Bennett, a 42-year-old white male who was reported missing on Wednesday, December 6, 2023. Friends reported that Bennett was last seen or heard from around October 25, 2023, in the Rupert area of Greenbrier County.
      Trinity Aaron Bennett is described as approximately 5'11 inches in height, weighing 179 pounds, with reddish-brown hair and striking blue eyes. A photograph of Mr. Bennett is included below to aid in identification efforts.
      Friends of the missing individual have expressed concern for his well-being, prompting the Greenbrier County Sheriff's Department to escalate efforts to locate him. The department is urging anyone with information about Trinity Aaron Bennett's whereabouts to come forward.
      Captain K.L. Sawyers of the Greenbrier County Sheriff's Department is the designated point of contact for any information related to Mr. Bennett's disappearance. Captain Sawyers can be reached directly at 304-647-6634. Additionally, individuals can choose to share information through private messaging on the official Greenbrier County Sheriff's Department page.
      The community is encouraged to come forward with any information, no matter how small it may seem, as it could be crucial to the investigation. The Greenbrier County Sheriff's Department expresses gratitude for any assistance provided and reassures the public that all information will be treated with the utmost confidentiality.
      In times like these, community collaboration is vital in ensuring the safety and well-being of all residents. The Greenbrier County Sheriff's Department remains committed to resolving this matter swiftly and bringing closure to Trinity Aaron Bennett's friends and family.
      If you have any information about Trinity Aaron Bennett or his possible whereabouts, please contact Captain K.L. Sawyers at 304-647-6634. Your cooperation is invaluable in helping to reunite Mr. Bennett with his loved ones.
      **Update on Thursday, December 07, 2023. Information has been received and followed up on that leads us to believe that Mr. Bennett is fine and still in the Rupert area of Greenbrier County. As always, we appreciate all of the help we received!**

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    10. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      Over the weekend, many residents of Rainelle's may have noticed a change in the appearance of their fire dues notices arriving in their mailboxes. This shift in aesthetics is not the result of a scam but rather a proactive effort by the Rainelle Fire Department to enhance the process of collecting fire dues for its valued supporters.
      In a bid to make the entire procedure more streamlined and user-friendly, the Rainelle Fire Department has switched providers for its fire dues notifications. This transformation aims to simplify the experience for the community members who contribute to the vital services provided by the department.
      Residents who receive a letter enclosed in an envelope along with a remittance slip, similar to the one pictured below, can rest assured that these notifications are indeed legitimate and not a scam. The new format reflects the department's commitment to ensuring transparency and efficiency in collecting fire dues.
      For those who typically pay their fire dues along with their water bills, the Rainelle Fire Department encourages you to get in touch with them. By doing so, you can request to be removed from the fire dues mailing list, as your dues are already being processed through an alternative channel. This will help reduce any potential confusion and ensure that the department's records are accurate.
      Conversely, if you are accustomed to receiving a fire dues notice in the mail but did not receive one this year, the Rainelle Fire Department kindly requests that you reach out to them. This will enable them to add you to their mailing list and ensure that you stay informed about your fire dues responsibilities.
      The Rainelle Fire Department extends its heartfelt gratitude to the community for their continued support. Your contributions are crucial in maintaining the department's ability to provide rapid response and essential services in times of need. The recent changes to the fire dues notification process are part of an ongoing effort to enhance the efficiency and convenience of this vital community service.
      If you have any questions or need further information regarding fire dues or the changes implemented by the Rainelle Fire Department, please do not hesitate to contact them directly. Your cooperation and support are greatly appreciated, and together, we can continue to ensure the safety and well-being of our community.

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    11. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      Greenbrier County Commission held its regular meeting on September 12, 2023. The meeting began with a prelude and the Pledge of Allegiance led by John Kelly. A prayer was offered for the well-being of Bremer County and its citizens, including first responders. The meeting was called to order by the commission chair, and the minutes of the August 22, 2023, regular meeting were approved.
      Next on the agenda was the approval of settlements of estates. Cindy Alley presented the names of seven individuals whose estates were being settled. The motion for approval was made and passed.
      The commission then discussed and approved budget revisions, including increases in circuit clerk postage, law enforcement overtime reimbursement from Pitney Bowes, the City of Beckley, and the Cleveland Browns Football Company.
      Line item transfers were also approved, including a transfer of funds from Circuit Court postage to advertising for publication.
      The commission approved the payment of bills since the last meeting.
      The meeting then moved to new business, where the commission signed a proclamation declaring September 17th through 23rd, 2023, as Constitution Week.
      Following that, the commission approved a funding commitment of $1,500,000 for the tax increment financing project for the replacement of hangar doors at Greenbrier Valley Airport.
      The fiduciary commissioner's report and recommendation on the estate of Donald Maurice Clark were approved.
      The commission approved a request for a reduced building permit fee for the installation of hangar doors at Greenbrier Valley Airport.
      An update on construction projects at the courthouse annex was provided, including the runway rehab project, new snow removal equipment building, and ongoing improvements.
      The meeting concluded with acknowledgments of the efforts of first responders and county employees and a motion to adjourn.
      The meeting was adjourned, with thanks given to all participants.

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    12. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      As part of the regular meeting, the County Commission approved the hiring of a new deputy sheriff, Aaron Davis. He was in the National Guard and currently works in the regional jail system. However, he is not certified and will require training. According to Bruce Sloan, the Greenbrier County Sheriff's Department currently has two vacancies and conducted scheduled testing this past Saturday, where only two applicants passed the Civil Service Examination, and multiple applicants failed the examination. According to Lowell Rose, "Unfortunately, some people don't realize that it's something they need to study a little bit and have knowledge of before they come in. They think it's a quick knowledge test and out the door, and it's NOT." He also felt that we lose some pretty good recruits because of that.
      There was also a new hire for the Circuit Clerk's office, Melissa Meadows, after Jamie Baker reported receiving more than 70 resumes. The next order of business was to address that April is National County Government Month, and Tammy Tincher presented a resolution, which passed. The committee will also have a special meeting on April 18th at 1:00 PM to discuss a levy. Updates regarding the courthouse indicate that they're still waiting for an electrical service panel, and columns are being added to the courthouse as of today.
      https://www.facebook.com/gbrcourthouse/videos/549578907358162
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    13. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      Greenbrier County has been a hub of activity lately, with a series of meetings and events shedding light on significant community developments and essential initiatives. From the impact of tourism on the local economy to efforts to raise awareness about suicide prevention and even updates on the Meadow River Rail Trail, here's a round-up of the key highlights from recent county activities.
      The Greenbrier County Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) presented its annual report, revealing a remarkable 17% boost in tourism spending in 2022, hitting $5.3 billion. This surge in tourism brought 53,000 jobs and a windfall in income and taxes. The CVB's savvy campaigns delivered a dazzling $18.50 ROI for every advertising dollar spent. As phase one of the Meadow River Rail Trail nears opening, excitement builds for more visitors and local spending.
      Greenbrier County marked September as National Suicide Awareness and Prevention Month with a heartfelt ceremony. Alarming stats reveal suicide's toll, with 48,000 lives lost each year. The event paid tribute to Charles Randall Smith, an 18-year veteran of the Greenbrier County Sheriff's Department who battled suicide. The proclamation aims to destigmatize mental health conversations and foster community support.
      The Meadow River Rail Trail Commission is gearing up for phase one's October 13th opening. Maintenance funds secured ensure trail safety. Willis Weed Whackers won a $7,000 mowing contract, beating a $24,000 bid. Adjacent property owners were notified, promoting transparency. A covenant preserves the trail's recreational, non-motorized character.
      County officials considered extending funding for the Glenwood Area Broadband project to June 2024. Project management consultants will oversee courthouse renovations. A proposal for shift differential pay for 911 personnel awaits further review.
      These developments underscore Greenbrier County's growth and commitment to community well-being.
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    14. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      In an effort to ensure the safety and efficiency of firefighting operations, the dedicated members of the Lewisburg Fire-Company 20 are gearing up for a vital task this weekend – the testing of fire hydrants. This operation is slated to take place North of I-64, with the testing commencing on Fairview Road, and it will also encompass the Renick Fire district.
      As the weeks unfold, Lewisburg's finest firefighters will be diligently testing fire hydrants within the Lewisburg and Caldwell areas. But why is this information being relayed to the community, you may wonder?
      The significance lies in the crucial role that fire hydrants play in ensuring rapid response and ample water supply in the event of a fire emergency. To guarantee these hydrants function optimally when needed, firefighters will perform a series of tests that involve flowing water from the hydrants.
      It's important to note that the water used during these tests is sourced from the same water lines that residents rely on for their daily water consumption. Herein lies the cause for an occasional inconvenience that some residents may encounter.
      During fire hydrant tests, as water is forced through the hydrants, it can agitate any sediment that may have accumulated inside the water lines. This can result in a temporary discoloration of the water, often manifesting as a brownish hue.
      It's essential for residents to remain calm if they observe brownish water during these tests, as it poses no health risk. In time, as residents use water in their daily activities such as flushing toilets, doing laundry, or running tap water, the brownish tint will naturally dissipate.
      Should you experience brownish water in your home, there's a simple solution – let the water run for a short duration to help clear any discolored water from your plumbing system. This straightforward step will aid in restoring clear water.
      Lewisburg Fire-Company 20 is committed to addressing any questions or concerns regarding this matter. If you have inquiries or require further information, please do not hesitate to contact them at 304-645-3237 or 304-667-3976. Your cooperation and understanding are greatly appreciated.
      Lewisburg Fire-Company 20 recognizes that this operation may bring about some temporary inconvenience for residents. However, they emphasize the importance of ensuring the proper functioning of fire hydrants, which ultimately contributes to the safety and well-being of the community. Your understanding is valued, and they extend their apologies for any inconveniences that may arise during this essential testing process.

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    15. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      Greenbrier County Commission has recently signed a proclamation declaring May as "Ruritan Awareness Month" in the county. The announcement was made by Debra Bowman during the Commission's meeting on May 9. This year, Ruritan National celebrates 95 years of serving communities, and Greenbrier County is proud to have 184 members of this civic organization. Ruritan is a community-based organization that is made up of local clubs, small towns, and rural communities that work towards making their communities better places to live and work.
      Currently, Greenbrier County has eight Ruritan clubs located in Clintonville, Frankford, Maxwellton, Muddy Creek Mountain, Richland, Renick, Smoot, and Lewisburg. Ruritan members have been actively working towards the betterment of the county, and their dedication and commitment have not gone unnoticed. The proclamation signed by the Commission is a way to acknowledge and appreciate the efforts of Ruritan members in Greenbrier County.
      Apart from the Ruritan Awareness Month proclamation, the Commission also discussed several other important matters during their meeting. The commission considered the appointment of two new hires, Destiny Hurley and Tracy Peyton, for the Greenbrier County 9-1-1 Center and the Office of Emergency Management, respectively. Additionally, the Mountain State Transit Authority's funding request of $10,000 was granted by the Commission.
      The Commission also made some important decisions regarding the courthouse renovation project. The Lawrence Company was selected to assist with the moving process, while Segra was selected to handle the telephone and communications portion of the project. Adam Whanger Contracting's bid of $2.7 million was accepted for the Greenbrier County Health Department's construction and renovation project.
      Furthermore, the Commission approved financing for the second phase of the county's ongoing water extension project of $20 million. In addition, the county received a grant for "The GigReady Broadband project" from the WV Development Office. Finally, the Commission announced that their next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 23.
      Overall, the Commission's meeting on May 9 was productive, with several crucial decisions made regarding the betterment of Greenbrier County.
      https://www.facebook.com/gbrcourthouse/videos/631859568793325
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    16. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      In a recent regular county commission meeting held on Wednesday, January 24, 2024, the Greenbrier County Commission delved into various matters crucial to the community. The meeting, led by Lou Kelly, began with an invocation and the Pledge of Allegiance, setting a respectful tone for the proceedings.
      The commission commenced with routine business, approving the minutes of the January 9, 2024 regular meeting. Further, settlements of estates under the guidance of Fiduciary Supervisor Cindy Alley and considerations of exonerations, county splits, and consolidations led by Joe Darnell, Assessor, were addressed.
      County Clerk Robin Loudermilk presented financial approvals, including arts and recreation transfers, budget revisions, line item transfers, and bill payments. The meticulous scrutiny of these financial matters ensures responsible governance and allocation of resources.
      Under new business, the commission tackled critical issues: Change Order #5 for the Meadow River Rail Trail project, funded by the WVDOH TAP grant, was considered. This change order, amounting to $107,788.09, focused on essential improvements to the Corliss Road access, ensuring smooth project implementation.
      The commission reviewed employment applications for new hires at the Greenbrier County 911 Center. Kimryn Glover and Whitney Harris were proposed as candidates, bringing diverse skills and backgrounds to enhance the center's operations.
      The separation of employment for Christopher Bennett from the Greenbrier County Sheriff’s Department was confirmed. Additionally, the commission considered the appointment of a fiduciary commissioner, recognizing the importance of additional oversight in certain cases.
      Discussions centered around amendments to the agreement between the Greenbrier County Commission and CityNet LLC, aiming to streamline the process of poll attachment agreements for the GigReady Broadband Project.
      A resolution to facilitate agreements and memoranda of understanding between the commission and Greenbrier Valley Economic Development Corporation was discussed. The focus was on ensuring the transferability of poll attachment agreements held by CityNet LLC for the GigReady Broadband Project.
      Two bids were presented for the construction of a communication equipment shelter for the Greenbrier County 911 agency. The bids from Cell Site Solutions LLC and IP Incorporated were evaluated based on cost, delivery time, and compliance with requirements.
      As the meeting progressed, the commission wisely decided to recess certain agenda items, including the consideration of amendments to the management and operations agreement. This strategic move allows for a thorough review by legal counsel before final decisions are made.
      The Greenbrier County Commission demonstrated its commitment to transparent and informed decision-making, addressing various facets crucial to the community's well-being. The community eagerly awaits further developments as these initiatives progress.

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    17. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      As Halloween approaches, the West Virginia Governor’s Highway Safety Program (GHSP) is partnering with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to remind everyone that safe and responsible celebrations should be a top priority during this beloved holiday. Halloween is not only a time for costumes and candy but also for parties and gatherings, which can lead to an increase in drunk drivers on the roads. To combat this issue, the GHSP is spreading the crucial message that "Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving."
      On Halloween and Trick-or-Treat nights, when more pedestrians are out at night in pursuit of candy, drivers are urged to be extra cautious, particularly if their plans involve alcohol. It is essential to plan for a sober ride home to ensure the safety of all road users. It's a sobering fact that during the years 2017-2021, there were 159 people killed in drunk-driving crashes on Halloween night.
      In 2021, there was a decrease in fatalities, with 38 people killed in drunk-driving crashes on Halloween night, down from 58 people in 2020. However, it is still alarming that adults between the ages of 21 and 34 accounted for 55% of the fatalities in drunk-driving crashes on Halloween night in 2021.
      Nationally, roughly one-third of all traffic crash fatalities involve drunk drivers with Blood Alcohol Concentrations (BACs) at or above 0.08 g/dL. In 2021, there were 13,384 people killed in drunk-driving crashes. It's worth noting that it is illegal to drive with a BAC of 0.08 g/dL or higher in most of the United States, except for Utah, where the limit is 0.05 g/dL.
      Despite these laws, the statistics are grim, as one person was killed every 39 minutes in a drunk-driving crash on the nation's roads in 2021. Moreover, the rate of alcohol impairment among drivers involved in fatal crashes was 2.8 times higher at night than during the day.
      Men are more likely than women to drive under the influence when involved in fatal crashes. In 2021, 22% of males were found to be drunk, compared to 17% of females.
      "Even though Halloween falls on a Tuesday this year, we anticipate an increase in parties and get-togethers during the week leading up to and throughout the weekend. We want those who celebrate with adult beverages to plan a sober ride home in advance," said Amy Boggs, GHSP Occupant Protection Coordinator. "Even one drink can impair judgment, and the same is true for any illegal drug or certain prescription medications. You should never put yourself or others at risk because you made the wrong choice to drink and drive. Remember: Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving."
      It's not just drunk driving that poses a danger on Halloween; pedestrians should also be cautious, whether they are children trick-or-treating or adults who have consumed alcohol. Walking while intoxicated can be deadly, as a lack of attention to their surroundings could put pedestrians at risk of being struck by a vehicle.
      "Of course, we want people to have a fun night out on Halloween. But more importantly, we want people to be safe and make responsible choices," Boggs continued. "There are many options available today to help drivers get home safely if they've been drinking or using drugs. We expect drivers to be responsible and refrain from driving after consuming an impairing substance."
      In conclusion, Boggs emphasized, "The bottom line is: If You Feel Different, You Drive Different. Get a sober ride home and keep all road users safe this Halloween."
      Celebrate with a Plan
      If you plan to head out for a night of Halloween partying, remember these simple tips for a safe and happy evening:
      Never drink and drive: Even if you've had only one alcoholic beverage, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation or a ride service to get home safely. Use a sober ride program: If available, take advantage of your community's sober ride program or a taxi. Report drunk drivers: If you see a drunk driver on the road, contact local law enforcement. Intervene for friends: If you have a friend who is about to drink and drive, take their keys away and make arrangements to get them home safely. Always remember: Buzzed Driving Is Drunk Driving. For more information, visit www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/drunk-driving. For more information about the West Virginia Governor’s Highway Safety Program, visit highwaysafety.wv.gov or call 304-926-2509.
      As Halloween approaches, let's make sure the scariest thing on the road is a child's spooky costume, not the consequences of impaired driving. Stay safe and enjoy the festivities responsibly.
      Source: https://transportation.wv.gov/communications/PressRelease/Pages/Before_You_Celebrate_with_the_Ghouls_&_Goblins_Plan_for_a_Sober_Ride.aspx
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    18. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      Greetings to all on this Thanksgiving eve!
      We have been made aware of variations of a scam that seems to be in full force today against several Greenbrier County residents.
      We have had several reports of citizens receiving phone calls from individuals stating that they are members of the Greenbrier County Sheriff's Office and are using names of current and past Sheriff's Office employees. During these phone calls, the individuals are requesting money and stating that arrest warrants have been issued and that court dates have been missed. The individuals further state that if the money isn't paid, the person they are calling will be arrested.
      We assure you that you WILL NOT receive a call of this type from legitimate members of the Sheriff's Office. We will never contact you requesting payment be made to us or you'll be arrested. Do not fall for this scam!
      If you are contacted by an individual trying to make you a victim of this scam, do not provide any information and hang up the phone immediately.

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    19. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      The Greenbrier County Commission convened for its regular session, confronting pivotal issues including a contentious property dispute and logistical adjustments for the upcoming primary election amidst renovations to the historic Greenbrier County Courthouse.
      The commission grappled with a familial dispute over the estate of, a longtime resident of Greenbrier County. Brothers Daniel and Michael, fraternal twins, found themselves at odds regarding the fate of their family home. Fiduciary Commissioner Shear presented exhaustive recommendations following meticulous investigations and consultations with the involved parties.
      Commissioner Shear's recommendations, accepted by the commission, advocate for an amicable resolution between the siblings regarding the property's ownership. Should a consensus prove elusive, the property may be subject to sale, with equitable distribution of proceeds among the brothers.
      With renovations underway at the esteemed Greenbrier County Courthouse, the commission approved alternative locations for early voting during the 2024 primary election. The Romano Law Office annex and the Rupert Community Building were designated as primary early voting sites, ensuring accessibility and convenience for voters amidst the courthouse renovations.
      In a bid to rejuvenate the local landscape, the commission greenlit a grant of $572,000 from the Division of Environmental Protection. This funding will facilitate the demolition of derelict and abandoned properties scattered throughout Greenbrier County, enhancing community aesthetics and safety.
      Furthermore, the commission deliberated on the transfer of a portion of property to the Greenbrier Valley Economic Development Corporation, valued at approximately $150,000. This strategic transfer aims to catalyze economic development endeavors within the county, fostering growth and prosperity for residents.
      As the meeting concluded, the Greenbrier County Commission reiterated its unwavering commitment to serving the best interests of the community. By fostering transparency, collaboration, and pragmatic solutions, the commission remains steadfast in its mission to navigate complex challenges and propel Greenbrier County toward a prosperous future.
      The courthouse renovations serve as a symbol of ongoing progress and revitalization within Greenbrier County, reflecting the community's resilience and determination in overcoming obstacles and embracing positive change.

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    20. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      Weather permitting, construction work to upgrade water lines from Dwyer Lane to Lee Street in Lewisburg, West Virginia, will begin on Monday, March 6, 2023. Construction crews will also be working on the field adjacent to Teaberry Road. While the roadways will remain open, they will be reduced to single lanes to accommodate the construction work. Therefore, it is important to exercise caution while traveling in these areas due to the ongoing construction activities.
      The primary goal of this construction project is to upgrade the water lines in the area, which will improve the quality and reliability of the water supply for residents and businesses in Lewisburg. Additionally, the project will enhance the infrastructure of the area and provide long-term benefits to the community.
      The construction work on the field adjacent to Teaberry Road is also an important part of the project, as it will further improve the overall infrastructure of the area. The construction crews will be working diligently to complete the project in a timely manner, but there may be some disruptions to the daily routines of residents and businesses in the area.
      While the roadways will be reduced to single lanes, the project coordinators are committed to minimizing any inconvenience to local residents and businesses. They will be working closely with local authorities to ensure that traffic is managed safely and efficiently during the construction period.
      In conclusion, the construction work to upgrade water lines from Dwyer Lane to Lee Street and the field adjacent to Teaberry Road in Lewisburg, West Virginia, will begin on Monday, March 6, 2023. The roadways will remain open but will be reduced to single lanes. It is advised to exercise caution while traveling in these areas due to the ongoing construction activities. The project aims to improve the quality of water supply and infrastructure in the area, which will provide long-term benefits to the community.
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    21. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      The Greenbrier County Commission held its scheduled meeting on March 28, 2023, to discuss several important issues affecting the county. One of the speakers was Mary Carr, a representative from the Children's Home Society, a local nonprofit organization that works to provide support and assistance to children in need, ensuring their safety and well-being. The society also partners with six other organizations in the area to address the issue of child abuse.
      The County Commission also signed a proclamation and agreed to host a Children's Memorial Flag Day Ceremony on April 28th at 12 pm, which will be held at the Greenbrier County Courthouse. The ceremony aims to bring awareness to April being Child Abuse Awareness Month. According to Child Protective Services, there were more than 3.1 million reported cases of child abuse in the US during 2022, an issue the organization is working to address. More information can be found at http://www.childhswv.org/.
      Additionally, during the meeting, the commission discussed the Quinwood broadband project and selected Steptoe & Johnson as the legal firm to work with the county regarding the project. The goal of the project is to expand high-speed internet access in the area and promote economic development. The commission hopes to receive updates on the project's progress and discuss any related issues.
      The commission approved a budget for the year, with an annual revenue of $17,937,037 and expenses totaling nearly $16.951,197. The budget aims to support various programs and services in the county, including public safety and infrastructure.
      Finally, the commission reminded residents that this is the last week to pay their taxes. Anyone who has not paid their taxes by Friday will be considered delinquent. The County Courthouse is open to receive tax payments during regular business hours, or they can be paid online.
      https://www.facebook.com/gbrcourthouse/videos/748552866678196
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    22. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      In a ceremony at the Town Council Meeting last night, the Town of Rainelle proudly introduced Chief Mike Evans as its new Chief of Police. Chief Evans, a native West Virginian with a distinguished 25-year career in law enforcement, was officially sworn in, marking the beginning of a new era for the Rainelle Police Department.
      Having recently retired from the Polk County Sheriff’s Office in Florida, Chief Evans brings a wealth of experience and administrative expertise to the small community of Rainelle. The selection of Chief Evans reflects the town's commitment to enhancing its police force and ensuring the safety and well-being of its residents.
      Chief Evans's extensive background in law enforcement includes a range of roles and responsibilities that position him as an ideal leader for Rainelle. His experience encompasses both fieldwork and administrative duties, providing a well-rounded perspective on the challenges and opportunities facing modern law enforcement agencies.
      The Town of Rainelle looks forward to Chief Evans's leadership, anticipating positive changes and continued dedication to community-oriented policing. Chief Evans's commitment to transparency, accountability, and community engagement aligns with the town's values, setting the stage for a collaborative and effective approach to law enforcement.
      As Chief Evans assumes his new role, the Town of Rainelle expresses gratitude to the outgoing leadership and looks ahead to a safer and more secure future under the guidance of its new Chief of Police. Residents are encouraged to engage with Chief Evans and the police department as they work together to build a stronger, safer community for everyone.

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      290 • 0

    23. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      As West Virginia braces for an impending winter storm, Governor Jim Justice has declared a State of Emergency for all 55 counties in the state. The announcement, made on Thursday, January 18, 2024, comes in response to forecasts from the National Weather Service predicting heavy snowfall, dangerous wind chills, and strong winds.
      Governor Justice urged all West Virginians to be prepared for the potential impact of the winter storm. In a statement, he emphasized the importance of staying informed through emergency officials and media outlets. Additionally, he advised citizens to be ready for possible power outages and encouraged them to check on neighbors and loved ones.
      The State of Emergency enables state agencies to coordinate efforts in advance of the weather event. This includes the pre-positioning of personnel, vehicles, equipment, and other assets to ensure a swift and effective response.
      Earlier this month, Governor Justice had issued a State of Preparedness for all 55 counties, which remains in effect. This proactive measure allows the state to be ready for any emergencies that may arise.
      EMD Director GE McCabe emphasized the potential challenges posed by the storm, including difficult travel, extreme cold, and other hazardous conditions. The EMD is working closely with local offices of emergency management, state and federal partners, and utility companies to assist and respond as needed.
      The State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) is on standby, with emergency management staff operating 24/7 to monitor weather changes and relay critical information to agency leaders for immediate action. EMD remains in constant contact with all county emergency management agencies, providing non-emergency numbers for citizens seeking local assistance.
      WVDOH crews are actively engaged in snow removal and ice control operations throughout the week. With a stockpile of over 231,000 tons of salt, the department is well-prepared for varying snowfall amounts. The WVDOH has over 1,000 trucks equipped with plows and salt-spreading capabilities, ensuring continuous coverage on roadways 24/7.
      Priority routes, categorized into four levels, guide the deployment of resources. Motorists are reminded to exercise caution, slow down, and give snowplow drivers the necessary space to carry out their duties.
      The National Weather Service predicts a low-pressure system bringing accumulating snow across the region, with the highest amounts of 8 to 12 inches in the northeastern mountains of West Virginia. Winter Storm Warnings and Advisories are in effect across the area, with frigid weather expected over the weekend.
      An additional arctic air blast following the system will bring dangerous wind chills. A thaw is anticipated during the next work week, with rain expected as temperatures rise.
      West Virginians are urged to stay vigilant, follow updates from authorities, and take necessary precautions during this winter weather event. The state's coordinated response aims to ensure the safety and well-being of all residents across the 55 counties.
      Source: https://governor.wv.gov/News/press-releases/2024/Pages/Gov.-Justice-declares-State-of-Emergency-for-all-55-counties-ahead-of-winter-storm.aspx
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    24. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      The city of Ronceverte has issued a boil water advisory affecting several streets in the area. The affected areas include the vicinity of Locust and Greenbrier Avenue intersection to the end of Greenbrier Avenue, and the streets of Cedar and Chesapeake to Murray Street intersection.
      https://local.nixle.com/greenbrier-county-homeland-security-and-emergency-management/
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    25. Government News

      GreenbrierJournal

      The Greenbrier County Commission held its regular meeting on October 10, 2023, to address various matters of public interest. The meeting covered a wide range of topics, including staffing updates for the 911 center, infrastructure projects, and the Greenbrier County gig-ready broadband project.
      The meeting began with updates from Don Havens, the director of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, regarding staffing issues within the 911 center. Two candidates had been interviewed for 911 dispatcher positions. One candidate was selected and offered a position due to her enthusiasm and commitment to public service.
      A resolution was passed to authorize funding for the White Sulphur Springs Route 60 East sewer project from Tax Increment Financing (TIF) funds. The project had previously been approved as part of the TIF project renewal, and the resolution was a procedural step to meet the requirements of the Public Service Commission.
      The operation and maintenance agreement between the Greenbrier County Commission and City Net for the Greenbrier County gig-ready broadband project was discussed. It was clarified that this agreement had been approved previously, and there had been minor formatting changes. The agreement is still not executed, as the city's legal team was reviewing it. The need to bring it back for approval was discussed if substantial changes were suggested.
      Commissioners reminded attendees about the opening of the first eight miles of the Meadow River Trail. This non-motorized trail would open to the public after an invitation-only event.
      Before adjourning, the commissioners requested a moment of prayer for the people of Israel.

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