Nine Apply For Pocahontas 9-1-1 Director Position
Marlinton, WV – Eight Pocahontas County residents and one resident from Greenbrier County have applied to fill the 9-1-1 Director position after current Director Bill McLaughlin retires later this year. They are from Pocahontas – Henry Jaeger, Traci Alderman, Natasha McMann, William McMann, Mark Jonese, Randy Stemple, Carol Smallridge and Shawn Dunbrack, and James Lewis from White Sulphur Springs. The applications were opened during the regular County Commission meeting Tuesday, July 19th. The Commissioners will schedule a work session soon to review the applications.
In other business, Steve Weir Executive Director of the Greenbrier Valley Economic Development Corporation (GVEDC) spoke to the Commission about a project they are working on in conjunction with the Appalachian Regional Commission and the Natural Capital Investment Fund. ARC gave Natural Capital Investment a grant to develop ideas for community wind projects. They in turn asked the GVEDC how their group could help.
Weir says their proposal to ARC is to write a how-to manual for counties to use in assessing community wind projects, and he’d like to have input from the Pocahontas County Commission. He says the ultimate goal is to have a policy manual that can be distributed to all the counties served the ARC. Weir says a community wind project is where landowners come together to do a wind project themselves, rather than leasing land to a company. He says that way, they control the project and reap the benefits.
Commission President David Fleming says he appreciates being asked to contribute to the writing the manual. Rita Cruise, with Natural Capital Investment, says they would also be happy to hold a public meeting to explain more about community wind projects if desired by the Commission.
Weir was also on hand to answer any questions regarding the Commission’s resolution designating the GVEDC as the lead economic development organization for the county. Participation in such an organization is required to have access to state grant funding. Commissioner Martin Saffer expressed some doubts.
“Again I’m expressing some disappointment in [GVEDC] trying to be all things to all people” says Saffer. “I would hope the GVEDC would recognize the uniqueness of this area, especially this county in the assets we already have and to work with those and bolster education and improving public health, and improving opportunities that way rather than trying to do everything for everybody all the time. I have a concern about it.”
The motion to approve the designation of the GVEDC as the lead economic development organization for Pocahontas passed on a two to one vote with Saffer opposed.
The Commissioners also approved appointing Roger Trusler and Sam Gibson to the Pocahontas County Parks and Recreation Board, and Denise McNeel to the board for the Pocahontas County Free Libraries.