Braxton Citizens' News, Town Meeting

Commission approves MOU regarding broadband expansion

Melissa O’Brien was the first to address the County Commission at their regular meeting last Friday, May 20. O’Brien, with the firm Thompson & Litton, has been employed by the Roane County Economic Development Authority to provide engineering services for a project to expand broadband capabilities over 287 miles in a seven-county area which includes Braxton. The Roane based group is working with the local Commission and the Braxton County Development Authority to add approximately 31 miles of fiber optic cable to potentially serve local households and businesses. Her appearance before the Commission was to request the body approve a “Gigready Resolution and MOU” (Memorandum of Understanding) for the proposed joint project. After hearing O’Brien, Larry Clifton made a motion to approve the request.

Paula Cunningham asked the Commission what the county was doing with their share of the Opioid Settlement Monies resulting from a recent WV Attorney General’s case. Lisa Godwin informed Cunningham that there had not been a decision made and the Commission hoped to have that information by their next meeting.

Commission President Godwin reviewed the OES and 9-1-1 reports in lieu Director John Hoffman’s absence.

In other action, the Commission approved short form settlements, as presented by the Fiduciary Supervisor, for the following: Brant B. Butcher, Donnie Carl Carson, Elma B. Cutlip, Reta Ann Davis, Vernon R. Hamric, Marie B. Henline, Willard Creed Lake, Arabella P. Long, Paulene Richardson, Richard A. Rose and Argil E. Shaver.

One application for correction of erroneous assessments was before the Commission for consideration. Matthew and Jennifer Fleming were contesting listings on their taxes which contained the wrong year. Those requests were granted on a motion by Larry Clifton.

Two purchase orders for the Sheriff were approved via separate motions. Mid-State Chevrolet will replace a water pump on a 2014 Ford Explorer at a cost of $1,270.77. The Sheriff’s Office will also purchase two handheld Radar units from Galls at a cost of $1,187.78.

The Braxton County Development Authority, by way of two separate written requests, asked the Commission to appoint Brenda “Gabby” Gregory and Erica Whitney to the vacancies on the Authority Board. The second request asked that Jim McQuain, Keith Dancy and Lisa Godwin be reappointed to the board. Both requests were granted.

The Commission reviewed a letter requesting that Frank Hoover be reappointed to the Sugar Creek PSD Board. The request was granted on a motion by Larry Clifton.

Following a brief discussion, the Commission approved a $15,000 contribution to the BC Development Authority to be matched by the Authority and an anonymous donor to employee the grant writing services of Matt Ward and his firm.

Commissioner Melvin Gum made a motion to approve internal budget revisions for the County Clerk, Fiduciary Supervisor, County Commission, animal shelter, Emergency Services, Prosecuting Attorney and the Sheriff’s office.

Recapitulation of Delinquent Real Estate and Personal Property Taxes for the 2021 year were approved.

A motion by Larry Clifton authorized the Commission to advertise for tree removal from the Little Kanawha River in the Burnsville area that was creating a potential flooding hazard.

The final act of business during the brief morning session was the approval for payment of county and EMS bills as well as the minutes from the May 6 Commission meeting.

Being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 9:22 a.m. The next regular meeting of the Braxton County Commission will convene on June 3 beginning at 9:00 a.m.