Pocahontas Commission wants Day Report in ARC Building
Marlinton, W.Va. –
The Pocahontas County Commission is planning to move the Community Corrections Day Report Center in Marlinton to the ARC Building. During its Tuesday evening meeting, the commission discussed the relocation. The Day Report Center is currently located in the McK Building on Third Avenue. The lease with Chittum Land Development expires at the end of this month.
The county-owned ARC Building, the former Hanover Shoe factory, is under lease to J.P. Duncan and John Fitzgerald until August 31, 2013. The commission intends to work out a deal with the lessees until their lease expires. Community Corrections director Robert Tooze supported the idea and told the commission he could relocate by the end of the month.
USDA wildlife expert John Huben answered questions about coyote control in Pocahontas County. Huben says a USDA program has reduced sheep predation to a negligible number.
“We did a pilot program in 1996, which involved three counties and, at that point in time, WVU had documented losses as high as, on an average – I think it was 27.9-percent of the lambs were being killed on a number of farms that we surveyed,” he said. “Basically, to leap forward about 14-15 years, our program has dropped that 20-30-percent loss rate down to the neighborhood of just one to two percent per year on the farms where we protect.”
Huben says coyote calf predation is not a widespread problem.
“Cattle producers decided to address the problem a little different,” he said. “Calf predation is a lot more sporadic. It’s not so widespread. So, the cattle people decided that when they want service, the requesting producer pays a participation fee.”
The expert said coyotes had filled a niche in the ecosystem created by the elimination of wolves from eastern forests. Huben said a combination of non-lethal and lethal techniques are used to reduce coyote predation.
The commission received a letter from Ranson Law Office, stating that payment of a $19,000 legal defense bill, incurred by Prosecuting Attorney Donna Price, is due in full. The commission approved a response letter, stating that the commission will await the outcome of the Ethics Commission action against Price before considering payment. Commissioners Jamie Walker and David Fleming have expressed willingness to pay the invoice if Price is cleared of charges of failing to perform her duties as prosecutor.
In other business, the county commission:
– hired attorney Joanna Tabit to represent County Clerk Missy Bennett in a writ of mandamus action filed by Cheryl McCullough;
– terminated the services of attorney Joseph Leonoro, who was hired to answer employment questions but produced no report;
– approved a $4,080 expenditure for eight courtroom window shutters, to be made by Pocahontas Woods;
– took no action on a one-month rent extension for the Durbin Magistrate’s Office;
– heard an annual update from Pocahontas County Arts Council officers Arthur Kreft and Eric Werner.
– moved the first January meeting date to Thursday, January 3.