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Spirit of Jefferson Farmers Advocate
Charles Town, West Virginia
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February 20, 2003     Spirit of Jefferson Farmers Advocate
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February 20, 2003
 

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Areano. ..." " Out from Solid Waste Authority went before the County last week to request that the Scenic Overlook on and the Virginia line be closed. a panoramic view of the Shenandoah and as far as Berkeley County. However, Fred Blackmer, president of Keep Jefferson Beauti- is also a favorite dumping ground for trash, deer used appliances, etc. The site provides a first welcome and encourages the negative perception many state, said Blackmer. County Solid Waste Authority, which has au- 'deal with illegal dumps and eyesores, and Keep Jeffer- Inc., have reviewed the location and have ~at the best thing would be to close the site and move closer to the road to eliminate parking along the received the information but made no deci- meeting. Postpones Local Pageant and Miss Jefferson County Schol- scheduled for this Saturday at Wright Denny has been postponed until March, it was an- t organizers of the event. rescheduling of the pageant is being ironed out pageant and officials at Wright Denny School. date has been decided, an announcement will be ~rn'ginia Janna Kerns, of Morgantown, will emcee information about the upcoming event, call at 535-2637 or Joe Howell at 725-8809. Make Before ;sion ~lbourlle appeared be- County Corn- to plead for The commis- r j,n the process annual bud- groups w~/mted known. County Animal (AWS) was making a budget president- offered facts to regarding to the b takes in cats, kit- and adult dogs, and tries to find The animals with vaccinations necessary mediea- also provides spaying and the animals out. requested the commission staff pay. This help the organi- tin staffing, The funds will also In operating y expect to have a rtearly S20,000 this funds, if approved. that deficit. The Race Track Chaplaincy, represented-by Chaplain Rick Mann, requested $12,000 in aid. The Chaplaincy provides aid to those at the race track who are fighting battles with addictive behaviors including drug abuse, gambling, and most prevalent, alcoholism. The current budget of. ~65,000 comes from various sources. One-third comes from the race track, one-third from the horsemen and one-third from the community, including local qhurdms. Mann says that'wit~h help from the commism'on, he hopes to hire additional staff to deal with the increasing number of clients using the resource. Cur- rently, he said, there are 25 ac- tive cases of addictive behavior. Penn National has taken a hard stance against such be- havior, Mann said, and the suc- cess rate of his pregrsm has in- creased. ~hese people want to keep their jobs, so they have to succeed or leave," he said. First in Your Family, an edu- cation sponsorship program group, also appeared before the commission to request $10,000 specifically from video lottery funds. The group offers scholar- ships and mentoring services to area students whose parents did not go to college and who otherwise would possibly not strive to attend college them- selves. These requests, along with numerous others presented to the commission, will be ap- proved in full or in par~ ordi~ approved in the near future. The commission must have their final budget to the state no later than March 28. Library Unveils Design ~ni Milbourne Ferry Board of Trust- unveiled their new 'eXpansion which will 2,800 square feet to 2,300 square feet. Grove, of Grove & of Martin- on hand last Tues- a slide show of of the new facil- will allow octagonal room to the children's li- librarian Carol is very excited about of so much space. currently provides te and lap'baby pro- as activities for groups and many -~cts geared to the wing will nearly book storage. It will provide a quiet reading area and an area large enough to accommodate programs with 30-40 people in attendance. Currently the library struggles to provide enough space for popular speakers and other programs. Office space for the librar- ians will be an added feature in the new design as will a second restroom. The expansion, expected to cost between $400,000 and S500,000 will hopefully get un- derway this summer, said David Simmons, member of the library's board of trustees. The library has raised nearly 8320,000 of the needed funds and continues to seek dona- tions and other funding. With the new addition the libra,, hopes to expand its ser- vices to the public. Currently the library offers computers with Internet access as well as thousands of book titles avail- able for check out. The children's program is con- stantly expanding as new fami- lies relocate to this area. Another program offered which will hopefully be ex- panded is the current Books Continued on Page 2 Record T vo-foot Snow Schools Still Closed; Wise Declares Emergency Savanna Conrad enjoys the snow plied high along a ddveway as Michael Swartz continues to work hard to clear path for the home's vehicles. This scene was in Bolivar. Most of the streets in Charles Town were pamL~31e by the middle of the day on Wednesday, but snow pried high along the s~reets continued to plague motorists seeking a placeto park their vehicles. On North Street, car is buried under heavy snow (on the left) while two other vehicles approach from Washington Street. Snow was being removed from the downtown area as quioldy as humanly possible. This scene was repeated many times throughout the area since Monday with many motorists trying to free their cars from the grip of nearly two feet of snow. Meg McLaughlin, of Bolivar, is making some progress in her bid to again gain some vehicular mobility. Residents on Wednesday continued to recover from one of the largest storms ever re- corded in Jefferson County and West Virginia, a slow-moving blockbuster that dumped nearly two feet of snowfall lo- cally and between three and four feet elsewhere in West Vir- ginia. The storm, which began Sunday and did not cease until late Monday night virtually paralyzed the Mountain State as Gov. Bob Wise declared a state of emergency in the storm's wake, Statewide, more that 100,000 households were with- out power due to the mammoth snowfall, and residents in rural or remote areas were suddenly cut off from medical services and food supplies. In Jefferson County, the offi- cial snowfall was just a half- inch short of two feet, the most snow recorded locally since the snowstorm Of 1996. Road crews began Sunday to clear highways and streets of snow, but the relentless storm made this a daunting task. Most major highways (Route 9, Interstate 81, Route 340) were open to traffic by Tuesday, but in some places only single lane traffic was being experienced. Icy spots surfaced overnight as temperatures warmed into the low 40s Tuesday and then plummeted to below freezing during the night. Most streets in Jefferson County's municipalities were passable, but ice ruts and snow piled high along the thorough- fares made driving quite haz- ardous. Charles Town was us- ing front end loaders~nd dump trucks to remove snow in the major downtown business ar- eas While city, county and state crews worked to clear snow and plow streets, assistance also came in the form of help from the crews working on the downtown revitalization in Charles Town. Work on that project has been terminated until weather conditions improve. Meanwhile, schools in Jefferson County remained closed from the snow. Officials will have to deal with the lack of makeup days in the school calendar as a result of the storm, but it is still not clear how this will affect extension of the school year to make certain Continued on Page 2 Senate Continues Major Bills' Work By TOM MILLER PressNet Reporter CHARLESTON--An at- tempt to resolve the long- standing problem of over- weight coal trucks on state highways surfaced last week at the Legislature when Senate Majority Leader Truman Chafin, D-Mingo, announced plans to introduce a bill that would permit loaded trucks weighing far more than 100,000 pounds to travel on specific roads. "I'm convinced we have enough votes in the Senate to pass it and according to my in- formation there are as many as 60 votes in the House of Del- egates to support it," said Chafin. A simple majority of 51 votes would be needed in the House. After legislators failed to reach a satisfactory compro- mise on this issue during a spe- cial session last summer, Gov. Bob Wise decided not to include the matter in his 2003 agenda when he addressed the opening of the Legislature January 8. He indicated he wanted to wait until there was agreement among the parties involved. Earlier last week, both the House and Senate agreed to a joint conference committee on the important medical mal- practice bill that cleared the Senate late the previous week after passing the house the first week of the session. Sen- ate Judiciary Chairman Jeff Kessler, D-Marshall, and House Judiciary Chairman Jon Amores will be co-chairmen of the 10-member conference committee that should begin its deliberations this week. The Senate Judiciary Com- mittee also completed its work last week on the crucial over- haul of the state-run workers' compensation program that has an unfunded deficit of about $2.5 billion. That bill, far different from the one that passed the House in early January as well, now is in the Senate Finance Committee. A public hearing was planned Monday morning of this week to kick off consider- ation of the bill in the Finance Committee and it was to be held in the Cultural Center au- ditorium adjacent to the Capi- tol because of the crowd ex- pected fbr the hearing. A first attempt to pass the governor's recommended in- crease in the cigarette tax from 17 cents a pack to 55 cents a pack stalled last week in the Senate Finance Committee when Chairman Walt Helmick, D-Pocahontas, took the bill off the agenda to wait on the work- ers' compensation legislation that is going to require a sub- stantial funding initiative. Hetmick said late last week that a variety of revenue possi- bilities is still on the table for workers compensation includ- ing a hefty premium increase for employers, a payroll tax on both workers and their employ- ers and even some of the poten- Continued on Page 2