Braxton Citizens' News, Community, Town Meeting

County Commission hires new Director for EMS

In a very busy session last Friday, August 4, the Braxton County Commission hired a new Director for the Braxton County Emergency Ambulance Services. Barbara Adams, President of the Ambulance Authority Board brought the recommendation before the Commission. She requested the Commission hire Tiffany J. Hyer to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Kenny Summers who has served as Supervisor for the EMS. Adams explained that Hyer has been an employee of the agency for five years. She added that following the interviews Hyer was the Board’s unanimous choice. She will be paid $48,000 per year with all county benefits. Upon hearing the request, explanation, and meeting Hyer who was in attendance, Commissioner Larry Clifton made a motion to approve the recommendation.

Prosecuting Attorney Dwayne Vandevender requested that he be allowed to hire Monica Stewart for an office position. He stated that she would be paid $30,000 per year with all county benefits and could begin work on August 21. That request was granted.

Rodney Pritt, Manager of the Flatwoods Canoe Run PSD came before the Commission to request funding through the ARP Lost Revenue Fund for projects currently being worked on by his agency. He requested $45,000 for Engineering Studies to extend the sewer system to Curtaintown and other areas of Sutton and Gassaway that are not currently served. He requested $6,949.75 to pay CI Thornburg to replace a value in the Sutton Lane area. He explained that the company had the ability to change the faulty value without creating a boil water advisory which could devastate the businesses in the Sutton Lane area. He also requested $34,077.30 to place flow meters in the Gassaway, Sutton and Flatwoods areas that would separate stormwater and wastewater. All three requests were granted via separate motions.

John Hoffman Braxton OES/9-1-1 Director presented the Commission with July activity reports for both of his agencies. He also requested that the EMS be allowed to hire Joshua Swager as a full-time paramedic/driver. Swager will be paid $20.50 per hour with full county benefits. Hoffman also requested $3,000 to cover wages and benefits for the ambulance crews that were on stand-by at the Braxton County Fair. Both requests were approved.

Stanley Norman representing the Rosedale Community Center addressed the Commission regarding a previous allocation made to the senior center for a new HVAC unit for the older portion of the building. He explained that part of the Board wanted to move the funds to replace the HVAC unit in the newer portion of the complex. He requested a letter stating that the funds were designated for use on the older portion of the building. Commission President Lisa Godwin stated that they will research the minutes and provide the letter if those minutes support the action.

In other action, the Commission approved the probate appointments as submitted by the Fiduciary Supervisor on a motion by Larry Clifton. It was also Clifton’s motions that approved the applications for correction of erroneous assessments and the applications for consolidated of contiguous lands for tax purposes as submitted by the County Clerk.

Three separate purchase orders came before the Commission for consideration. All three were approved. Huffman Electric Inc. will perform electrical upgrades at the Commission’s building at 402 Riverview Drive for a total cost of $2,900. American Garage Door will receive $879 for repairs to the doors at the 9-1-1 complex.

Commission President Lisa Godwin ask Larry Clifton to explain why the item “Nullify RFQ for Current HVAC Bids” at the Courthouse Annex was on the agenda. Clifton explained that two contractors attended the mandatory pre-bid meeting. After inspection there was a consensus that an engineer should be hired to determine exactly what needed to be done. Clifton stated that he had a discussion with a friend that worked in the prison system that indicated that a prefab structure could be purchased that would meet the needs of the agencies housed in the annex and that he would like to explore the possibilities and bring the matter back before the commission for consideration. He felt the County’s Maintenance Department could have service performed to the existing heating system that would be adequate for the short term while he gathered information. Following the discussion, Clifton made a motion that the previous RFQ be nullified, and that service be performed in the building’s existing heating system.

Sheriff Lou DellaMea presented the Commission with a letter stating that Deputy Jordan was, in all likelihood, going to enter the West Virginia State Police and that he would like to advertise the position. That request was granted.

Deputy Bryce Scarboro represented the Sheriff in presenting a request to purchase 4 used police cruisers to be utilized as spare vehicles. He stated that due to a rash of recent accidents, the department did not have any extra cars. The cars, two from Harrison County for $6,000 and two from the city of Fayetteville for $6,500, would come fully equipped. He proposed financing the purchase for a 2-year period. President Godwin pointed out that they had received information from their insurance carrier that the county would be receiving a check for around $10,000 for the cruisers that were deemed a total loss.  She indicated that the Commission could front the Sheriff’s department the funds until the check arrives which would eliminate the need for financing. The requests were approved on a motion by Larry Clifton.

The Commission approved having GST-WV of Fairmont perform a Wi-Fi upgrade at the courthouse costing $2,244.56.

Melvin Gum made a motion to reappoint Ellen Weed as a member of the Airport Authority Board. Sue Rutherford was also reappointed treasurer.

Following a brief discussion, the Commission approved an estimate from Complied Technologies for two computers, accessories, and installation for the County Clerk’s front office at a cost of $3,116.44.

The Commission approved the appointment of April Short to a 5-year term on the Braxton County Board of Health.

Bobby Painter was also authorized to prepare the financial statement for FY 2022.2023.

Commission President Godwin explained that money previously granted to the Burnsville Public Utility Board for a river crossing had actually cost less than originally estimated and the Commission needs to authorize a revision in the amount. That action was taken on a motion by Larry Clifton.

Following a brief review, the county and EMS for payment were authorized as was the minutes for the Commission’s special meeting on July 20 and regular meeting on July 21.

The meeting adjourned at 10:08 a.m. The next regular meeting of the Braxton County Commission will be on August 18 beginning at 9:00 a.m.