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Webster County

Webster County

West Virginia High Schools Recognized for Exemplary Graduation Rates

Seventy West Virginia high schools were recognized for achieving exemplary graduation rates of 90 percent or greater during the 2015-16 school year. Schools were honored by Governor Jim Justice’s Chief of Staff, Nick Casey, State Superintendent of Schools Dr. Michael Martirano and the West Virginia Board of Education.

“Our state becomes stronger with each student that graduates high school,” Martirano said. “The high schools here today deserve the praise they are receiving for achieving a 90 percent or higher graduation rate. Our schools see the potential that a high school graduate holds for our state and they, along with the Department of Education and Board of Education, have made it a top priority to ensure our students show up, work hard, and earn a diploma.”

The Free Press WV
Gilmer County Superintendent Mr. Devono and GCHS Principal Mrs. Butcher
receiving a plaque in Charleston during a recognition ceremony.


Recent data show more students in West Virginia are graduating from high school when compared to previous years. Several statewide initiatives contributed to the steady increase in the graduation rate. Most notably the creation of the state’s Early Warning System, which tracks 45 different indicators – the most important being attendance, behavior and grades – to identify students at risk of dropping out.

West Virginia’s graduation rate has continued to rise throughout the last several years. Data from the U.S. Department of Education placed West Virginia among the top 20 states for graduation rates in 2014-15, with a rate of 86.5 percent. The average graduation rate in the Mountain State for the 2015-16 school year increased even more to 89.81 percent.

Of the 70 schools recognized, four schools achieved a graduation rate of 100 percent. Those schools include; Union Educational Complex, Harman High School, Pickens High School and Paden City High School.

The 70 schools recognized represent 60.3 percent of the 116 high schools in West Virginia. The overall graduation rate for all West Virginia high schools was 89.81 percent.

 

The Free Press WV
The Free Press WV

Mountain Valley Pipeline Public Hearing Notice

The Free Press WV

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection – Division of Water and Waste Management will hold public hearings regarding the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline project for State 401 Water Quality Certification, Natural Streams Preservation Act Permit, and for Oil and Gas General Water Pollution Control Permit. Oral and written comments will be accepted at each hearing. The hearings will start at 6:00PM at the following locations:

For Natural Streams Preservation Act Permit, State 401 Water Quality Certification, and Oil and Gas General Water Pollution Control Permit:

• Summers County at Summers Memorial Building (451 1st Ave in Hinton) on Tuesday March 07, 2017. 

For State 401 Water Quality Certification and Oil and Gas General Water Pollution Control Permit:

• Webster County at Webster County High School auditorium on Monday March 6, 2017.

• Harrison County at Robert C. Byrd High School Large Group Instruction Room on Thursday March 09, 2017.

The Mountain Valley Pipeline project is comprised of approximately 195 miles of natural gas pipeline along with compressor stations, meter stations, access roads, and interconnects through: Wetzel, Harrison, Doddridge, Lewis, Braxton, Webster, Nicholas, Greenbrier, Fayette, Summers, and Monroe Counties in West Virginia. The associated Oil & Gas Construction Stormwater General Permit (WVR310667) would be for the discharge of stormwater associated with the disturbance of 4,214 acres of land for the of construction of this project. The Natural Streams Preservation Act permit (NSP-17-0001) being sought is for a proposed crossing of Greenbrier River in Summers County near Pence Springs. The State 401 Water Quality Certification (WQC-16-0005) would be for activities that will or may discharge fill into waters of the State. Mountain Valley Pipeline project is proposing to mitigate for the streams and wetlands permanently impacted by this project.

Any interested person may submit written comments on the Oil & Gas Construction Stormwater General Permit, the Natural Streams Preservation Act Permit, and/or the State 401 Water Quality Certification by addressing such to the Director of the Division of Water and Waste Management during the comment period, which begins with this notice and ends on March 19, 2017 at 8PM. Comments or requests should be emailed to or by mail addressed to:

Director, Division of Water and Management, DEP

ATTN: Sharon Mullins, Permitting Section

601 57th Street SE

Charleston, WV 25304-2345

Applicant Type Permit ID

Mountain Valley Pipeline, LLC Oil & Gas Construction Stormwater General Permit WVR310667

Mountain Valley Pipeline, INC. State 401 Water Quality Certification WQC-16-0005

Mountain Valley Pipeline, INC. Natural Streams Preservation Act Permit NSP-17-0001

Additional Information

State 401 Water Quality Certification application (WQC-16-0005) (This is a large PDF file, which may take a moment to download and view)

Natural Streams Preservation Act permit application (NSP-17-0001) (This is a large PDF file, which may take a moment to download and view)

Oil & Gas Construction Stormwater General Permit (WVR310667)

Instructions for navigating the Oil and Gas Construction Stormwater General Permit webpages

Mountain Valley Pipeline Information Page

Glenville State College President’s Honor List for Fall 2016

The Free Press WV

Glenville State College has announced the names of GSC students who attained the President’s Honor List for the Fall 2016 semester.  To be named to the President’s Honor List, a student must have a 4.0 grade point average.

The students making the President’s Honor List are listed as follows according to their county of residence:


Berkeley County: Brianna D. Caison, Lawrence C. Wolf


Braxton County: Bridget D. Carr, Dakota S. Johnson, Stacy N. Loyd, Brittany V. White


Calhoun County: Devon T. Toppings


Clay County: Jessica M. Beckett, Julie A. Gross, Dalton M. Holcomb, Carrie G. Huffman, Andrea P. Litton, Kaitlyn J. Samples


Doddridge County: Joshua L. Smith


Fayette County: Matthew H. Hackworth


Gilmer County: Jonathan E. Clark, Landon P. Gumm, Michaela L. Gumm, Sean M. Lang, Brett M. Rinehart, Wesley A. Self, Hilari E. Sprouse, Trevor D. Wright


Grant County: Larissa A. Henry


Greenbrier County: Myka K. Perry


Hardy County: Faith V. Smith


Harrison County: Joseph M. Bush, Cecilia A. Matheney, Megan E. Ruppert


Jackson County: Brittaney M. Burdette, Chelsey Hager, Evan D. Merical


Jefferson County: Jasmine Z. Tarman


Kanawha County: Austin Broussard, Jerrica D. Hilbert


Lewis County: James Z. Browning, Daniel C. Conrad, Mariah L. Daniels, Abigail E. Jerden, Torie A. Riffle


Logan County: Hannah P. Runyon, Matthew A. Zachary


Marion County: Phillip J. Poling


Mason County: Kaylee M. Howard


Morgan County: Colton L. Brandenburg


Nicholas County: Lindsey S. Butcher, Joshua D. Huffman, Eric W. Peyatt, Kathryn G. Waddell


Preston County: Madison H. Null


Putnam County: Joshua L. Brennan, Jessica A. Layne


Randolph County: Diana R. Miller, Melissa D. Nicholson


Ritchie County: Brianna N. Ratliff, Kimberly A. Smith


Tyler County: Jessica L. Fiber


Upshur County: Brandy L. Bachman, Skylar A. Fulton


Webster County: Samuel A. Canfield, Hunter A. Given, Amber N. King, Chelsea E. Rule


Wood County: Michael L. Briggs


Out of State: Chere Y. Davis, Jacqueline T. Deary, Sarah M. DiSpaltro, Raven P. Fatool, Cedric J. Johnson, Kellie N. Kinsinger, Allison A. Parski, John S. Peloro, Victoria L. Peterson, Emily A. Walker, Brian S. Williams

Glenville State College Vice President’s Honor List for Fall 2016

The Free Press WV

Glenville State College has announced the names of GSC students who attained the Vice President’s Honor List for the Fall 2016 semester.  To be named to the Vice President’s Honor List, a student must have a minimum 3.5 grade point average on a minimum of 12 semester hours.

The students making the Vice President’s Honor List are listed as follows according to their county of residence:


Berkeley County: Alexander R. Miller, Brianna A. Shivers


Boone County: Ally K. Brown, Michele L. Epling, Crystal M. Jarrell, Gregory I. Lail


Braxton County: Jordan D. Batton, Coleden R. Belknap, Tyler K. Cunningham, Kathryn L. Dean, Larissa E. DeLuca, Jacob D. Haymond, Samantha N. Mazzella, Teddy J. Richardson, Cami D. Roberts, Alexis S. Spell, Heather N. Thayer, Kelsie R. Tonkin, Maranda J. Vaughan, Andrea B. Vidal, Brandon M. White, Shanna S. Wine


Calhoun County: Tiffany A. Brannon, Moriah J. CreelFox, Sr., Jared B. Fitzwater, Taylor S. Garrett, Chelsea  R. Hicks, Kelsey E. Jett, Erica N. Jones, Danielle N. Kendall, Cassandra D. Lamont, Johnathan X. Taylor


Clay County: Casey E. Brown, Opalene D. Huffman, William C. Robertson, Sydnee M. Vance


Doddridge County: Joshua M. Pitcock, Lindsey G. Travis


Fayette County: Vladimir V. Iotov, Kelsey L. Norris, Trevor D. Wood


Gilmer County: Anthony K. Aviles, Katelyn S. Benson, Julie A. Bishop, Monica D.  Bush, Madison L. Campbell, Sara B. Coombs, Colby G. Cunningham, Lucas D. DeMarino, Meghan Harubin, Christina L. Jenkins, Jaylin K. Johnson, Amanda R. Lamb, Tonya L. Lyons, Matthew M. Montgomery, Adam H. Moore, Cody M. Moore, Hannah M. Moore, Zandel M. Sponaugle, Alexus C. Sprouse, Zaon A. Starseed, Elania N. White, Carrissa M. Wood


Greenbrier County: Sarah Brunty, Tina M. Jerman


Hampshire County: Dylan G. Kesner


Harrison County: Hannah J. Barron, Lia Runyan


Jackson County: Ryan A. Gregory, Kirsten M. Marks, Joel E. McDonald, Sapphire N. Parsons, Clayton Swisher, Bradley J. Titus, Kelly J. Trippett


Jefferson County: Taylor L. Corey, Mary E. Lewis, Anthony R. Vazquez


Kanawha County: Faith Donze, McKenzie M. Edmonds, Kayli N. Hudson, Rema K. Jordan, Zachary Lively, Jonathan L. Mullins, Jeri D. Potter, Rebecca E. Wiseman


Lewis County: Haley R. Biller, Jennifer M. Eiler, Destiny L. Grimes, Michael W. Marion, James W. Martin, III, Justin P. Raines, J’Aime L. Shearer, Kelly L. Weaver


Logan County: Kaitlyn A. Bircheat, Alec G. Maynard


Marion County: Morgan P. Hardesty


Marshall County: Logen M. Lemasters


Mason County: Charles B. Walton


Mercer County: Lindsey R. Compton


Monongalia County: Alyssa B. Boback


Morgan County: Michaela A. Munson, Michael I. Pracht, Brady A. Tritapoe


Nicholas County: Autumn G. Barnett, Jessica R. Bird, Marlyn S. Donelson, Zachary G. Dotson, Madison R. Frame, Morgan Francis, Taylor Keenan, William Z. Lyons, Elizabeth M. Messer, Kaitlyn D. Peyatt, Autumn Siminski, Brooke A. Spencer, Nathan S. Spencer, Mason A. Thomas, Samuel P. Whitlock


Pendleton County: Virginia L. Bruce, Raven D. Turner


Pleasants County: Bethany G. Mote


Pocahontas County: Steven L. Casto, Isaac C. Hise


Preston County: Kathleen L. Faber


Putnam County: Jacob M. Stover


Raleigh County: Luke D. Carpenter, Kaylee S. Dickenson, Michael A. Layne


Randolph County: Christopher A. Cozad, Angela R. McWilliams, Kathlyne L. Simmons, Christopher D. Varner


Ritchie County: Madison E. Cunningham, Carleena P. Elliott, Olivia D. Goff, Trinity R. Muschweck


Roane County: Georgia B. Bing, Joshua C. Runyon, Bonita J. Schreckengost, James D. Williams


Taylor County: Eva S. Guthrie


Tucker County: John Chambers, Wiley T. Raines, Stephanie R. Williams


Tyler County: Devon J. Harris


Upshur County: Autumn Knight, Belinda L. Lewis


Wayne County: Taylor N. Brumfield


Webster County: Valerie L. Rule, Danielle Williams


Wetzel County: Daniel M. Jackson, Colton L. Ring, Andrew R. Tefft


Wirt County: Micheal L. Morgan, Mary M. Strong


Wood County: Taylor A. Broadwater


Wyoming County: Travis D. Gibson, Kaci M. Mullins


Out of State: Karla Y. Barr, Chandler R. Carrera, Ibrahim O. Ghanem, Dwyron K. Gillard, II, Taylor A. Gilliland, Noah R. Green, Jake Hensell, Justin S. Koogler, Momi P. Lievan, Paris M. McLeod, Anthony W. McPoyle, Emily M. Meyers, Stephen G. Mickle, Art’om T. Rank, John F. Routzahn, Isaiah R. Sattelmaier, Casey R. Sheaffer, Wesley D. Stauffer, Johnni M. Tillman, Ernesto Torres, Paranda S. Uber, Jack H. Varndell, Timothy G. Wine, Hannah N. Wright

West Virginia Hunters Harvest 112,384 Deer In 2016

The Free Press WV

Preliminary counts indicate West Virginia hunters harvested 112,384 white-tailed deer during the recently completed bucks firearms, antlerless, muzzleloader, archery, crossbow, and youth/Class Q/Class XS deer seasons, according to Paul Johansen, chief of the Division of Natural Resources (DNR) Wildlife Resources Section. This year’s total harvest was 19 percent below the 2015 deer harvest of 138,493 and 15 percent below the five-year average of 132,466.

A breakdown of the combined 2016 deer seasons reveals 46,071 bucks harvested during the traditional buck firearm season, 32,508 antlerless deer taken during all antlerless firearm hunting opportunities, 28,808 deer harvested by bows and crossbows, and 4,997 deer taken by muzzleloader hunters.


Antlerless Deer Season

The 2016 antlerless deer season harvest, which includes the youth/Class Q/Class XS deer season, was 18 percent less than in 2015 and 26.5 percent below the five-year average of 44,239.  “It is important to note that the antlerless harvest is the key component to any deer management strategy, as it controls the future deer population,” said Johansen.  Hunters are reminded that on March 13 and 14, 2017, the DNR will hold 12 public meetings across the state to gather comments on proposed fall 2017 antlerless deer hunting seasons in each of the 51 counties where firearms deer hunting is permitted.  The 2016 top 10 counties are: Preston (1,535), Upshur (1,485), Lewis (1,292), Mason (1,269), Jackson (1,224), Ritchie (1,215), Wood (1,126), Roane (1,034), Harrison (972), and Braxton (854).


Muzzleloader Deer Season

The 2016 muzzleloader harvest of 4,997 was 3 percent below the 2015 harvest of 5,178, and 21 percent below the five-year average of 6,344. The top 10 counties are Randolph (243), Nicholas (232), Preston (217), Upshur (185), Lewis (168), Jackson (158), Braxton (157), Mason (153), Wood (141), and Webster (139).


Archery and Crossbow Deer Season

The bow and crossbow hunter’s take of 28,808 deer was 11 percent less than the 2015 archery season harvest of 32,540, and four percent above the five-year average archery season harvest of 27,596.  Archery harvests are inversely correlated to hard mast crops. The below-average acorn crop in 2015, followed by a better acorn crop in 2016, likely contributed to the lower 2016 harvest; however, the proportion of the harvest taken using a crossbow increased in 2016 over that recorded in 2015.  The 2016 top 10 counties are: Preston (1,365), Randolph (975), Wood (945), Kanawha (921), Upshur (867), Wyoming (867), Mason (791), Jackson (785), Nicholas (765), and Raleigh (738).


WESTVIRGINIA DEER HARVEST, 2016

County

BuckFirearms

Antlerless

Muzzleloader

Archery/Crossbow

Total

Barbour

1,098

773

133

568

2,572

Brooke

268

367

38

287

960

Hancock

209

164

34

357

764

Harrison

1,138

972

113

632

2,855

Marion

765

787

113

521

2,186

Marshall

727

493

73

357

1,650

Monongalia

827

644

91

707

2,269

Ohio

270

222

46

294

832

Preston

1,774

1,535

217

1,365

4,891

Taylor

581

490

70

303

1,444

Tucker

730

191

73

409

1,403

Wetzel

899

819

90

335

2,143

District 1Subtotal

9,286

7,457

1,091

6,135

23,969

Berkeley

737

627

67

582

2,013

Grant

954

439

81

351

1,825

Hampshire

1,197

836

88

421

2,542

Hardy

1,076

610

63

317

2,066

Jefferson

422

413

54

417

1,306

Mineral

922

684

80

404

2,090

Morgan

437

406

44

241

1,128

Pendleton

1,088

448

70

345

1,951

District 2 Subtotal

6,833

4,463

547

3,078

14,921

Braxton

1,102

854

157

571

2,684

Clay

390

164

43

241

838

Lewis

1,246

1,292

168

629

3,335

Nicholas

1,044

470

232

765

2,511

Pocahontas

921

202

56

278

1,457

Randolph

1,617

803

243

975

3,638

Upshur

1,399

1,485

185

867

3,936

Webster

941

303

139

548

1,931

District 3 Subtotal

8,660

5,573

1,223

4,874

20,330

Fayette

889

266

124

718

1,997

Greenbrier

1,447

699

135

565

2,846

McDowell

456

456

Mercer

636

383

86

684

1,789

Monroe

1,099

752

70

550

2,471

Raleigh

648

206

70

738

1,662

Summers

657

562

62

403

1,684

Wyoming

 

 

 

867

867

District 4 Subtotal

5,376

2,868

547

4,981

13,772

Boone

573

147

72

364

1,156

Cabell

677

404

60

434

1,575

Kanawha

1,058

385

78

921

2,442

Lincoln

846

522

106

466

1,940

Logan

574

574

Mason

1,267

1,269

153

791

3,480

Mingo

386

386

Putnam

992

803

119

661

2,575

Wayne

815

252

62

419

1,548

District 5 Subtotal

6,228

3,782

650

5,016

15,676

Calhoun

705

599

69

326

1,699

Doddridge

946

706

70

308

2,030

Gilmer

791

634

93

311

1,829

Jackson

1,487

1,224

158

785

3,654

Pleasants

334

251

27

154

766

Ritchie

1,422

1,215

102

630

3,369

Roane

1,178

1,034

105

544

2,861

Tyler

855

766

82

330

2,033

Wirt

777

810

92

391

2,070

Wood

1,193

1,126

141

945

3,405

District 6 Subtotal

9,688

8,365

939

4,724

23,716

StateTotal

46,071

32,508

4,997

28,808

112,384

West Virginia Hunters Harvest 3,012 Black Bears In 2016

The Free Press WV

West Virginia hunters harvested 3,012 black bears during the combined 2016 archery, crossbow and firearms seasons, according to Colin Carpenter, Black Bear Project leader for the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources.

The preliminary black bear harvest data for the combined 2016 seasons were 6 percent lower than the record set in 2015. The harvest is the second highest bear kill recorded and is the second time the harvest has topped 3,000.

“The mast index for all oak species in 2016 increased significantly over 2015 and was above the long-term average,” said Carpenter. “Historically, an abundance of oak mast makes bears harder to target for archery hunters. Conversely, increased oak mast typically means a higher December firearms harvest because many bears delay entering their dens due to the abundance of food.”

Carpenter added, “In the 2016 Mast Survey and Hunting Outlook, we predicted a decreased archery harvest and a similar-to-slightly greater December firearms harvest over the levels observed in 2015. Our prediction held true for the archery season, but did not hold up in the December season.”

“Overall, the 2016 harvest declined during the archery, buck-gun and December seasons over the levels recorded in 2015. However, those decreases were partially offset by very successful early gun seasons in September and October.

Hunters killed 1,012 bears during the first segment of the 2016 archery season (Sept. 24 – Nov. 19).  They took 584 bears with vertical bows and 428 with crossbows. The top five counties were Randolph (82), Fayette (74), Nicholas (60), Greenbrier (55) and Preston (52).

Firearms hunters harvested 2,000 bears during 2016. Hunters took 883 bears in September and October, 349 during the concurrent buck-gun bear season, and 768 during the traditional December season. The top five counties were Pendleton (177), Randolph (167), Pocahontas (161), Nicholas (153) and Hardy (133).

2016 WEST VIRGINIA BLACK BEAR HARVEST

County

Bow/Crossbow

Sept/Oct Gun

Buck Gun

December

Total

Barbour

45

20

1

0

66

Brooke

0

0

0

0

0

Hancock

0

0

0

0

0

Harrison

16

0

2

0

18

Marion

3

0

0

0

3

Marshall

2

0

0

0

2

Monongalia

7

0

2

0

9

Ohio

0

0

0

0

0

Preston

52

41

22

22

137

Taylor

17

0

1

0

18

Tucker

35

37

6

50

128

Wetzel

1

0

0

1

2

District 1 Subtotal

178

98

34

73

383

Berkeley

3

0

3

0

6

Grant

25

31

6

39

101

Hampshire

17

0

29

4

50

Hardy

26

61

14

58

159

Jefferson

3

0

2

0

5

Mineral

11

0

0

9

20

Morgan

8

0

11

0

19

Pendleton

37

100

10

67

214

District 2 Subtotal

130

192

75

177

574

Braxton

36

11

4

11

62

Clay

9

13

7

16

45

Lewis

13

0

5

0

18

Nicholas

60

56

31

66

213

Pocahontas

23

62

11

88

184

Randolph

82

99

4

64

249

Upshur

14

10

2

6

32

Webster

38

50

9

52

149

District 3 Subtotal

275

301

73

303

952

Fayette

74

21

39

13

147

Greenbrier

55

45

12

73

185

McDowell

49

38

5

16

108

Mercer

33

0

4

2

39

Monroe

24

27

17

29

97

Raleigh

36

25

9

7

77

Summers

26

0

8

0

34

Wyoming

24

30

1

2

57

District 4 Subtotal

321

186

95

142

744

Boone

23

28

30

32

113

Cabell

0

0

0

0

0

Kanawha

26

38

33

28

125

Lincoln

1

0

0

0

1

Logan

22

26

1

2

51

Mason

0

0

0

0

0

Mingo

13

14

0

7

34

Putnam

0

0

0

0

0

Wayne

1

0

0

0

1

District 5 Subtotal

86

106

64

69

325

Calhoun

1

0

3

0

4

Doddridge

3

0

0

0

3

Gilmer

7

0

4

3

14

Jackson

0

0

0

0

0

Pleasants

0

0

0

0

0

Ritchie

4

0

0

0

4

Roane

1

0

0

0

1

Tyler

2

0

0

0

2

Wirt

4

0

1

1

6

Wood

0

0

0

0

0

District 6 Subtotal

22

0

8

4

34

State Total

1012

883

349

768

3012

Bears listed for Logan, McDowell and Wyoming counties as"Buck Gun” are bow or crossbow kills from 11.21.16 -12.031

November 19, 2016. All other bow and crossbow kills have been separated based on the seasonsin which they were killed

Area Closings Delays and Early Dismissal on Thursday, January 05, 2017

The Free Press WV
Status of Area Closings Delays and Early Dismissal on Thursday, January 05, 2017
 
Closings and Delays
Early Dismissal
Glenville State College  
Gilmer County Board of Education  
Gilmer County Courthouse  
Gilmer County Health Department  
Gilmer County Senior Center  
Minnie Hamilton Health System, Glenville Office Clinic 
Gilmer County Schools   Closing at 12:30 PM
Braxton County Schools   Closing 1 Hour Early
Calhoun County Schools   Closing at 12:00 PM
Doddridge County Schools   Closing 2 Hours Early
Lewis County Schools   Closing 2 Hours Early
Ritchie County Schools   Closing 3 Hours Early
Barbour County Schools   Closing 2 Hours Early
Clay County Schools   Closing 2 Hours Early
Harrison County Schools  
Nicholas County Schools  
Pleasants County Schools   Closing at 1:00 PM
Roane County Schools   Closing 3 Hours Early
Tyler County Schools   Closing 3 Hours Early
Upshur County Schools   Closing at 1:00 PM
Webster County Schools   Closing 2 Hours Early
Wetzel County Schools   Closing 2 Hours Early
Wirt County Schools   Closing 2 Hours Early
Wood County Schools  
Please Send us your closings and delays:  ‘tellus@gilmerfreepress.net’  or   304.462.8700


The Free Press WV

RISE West Virginia Grants for Flood Recovery Top $1.8 Million

The Free Press WV

More businesses in Greenbrier County received grant funding from the RISE West Virginia program than any other county hit hard in June 23 storms.

In all, 229 small businesses in ten counties received $1.8 million in grant funding via RISE West Virginia, according to numbers from the state Department of Commerce.

The awards by county were as follows:

Clay – 13
Fayette – 9
Greenbrier – 121
Jackson – 1
Kanawha – 37
Nicholas – 33
Pocahontas – 2
Roane – 7
Summers – 1
Webster – 9

The application deadline for mini-grants of up to $10,000 was Nov. 23.

RISE West Virginia was created to help the Mountain State’s small businesses keep their doors open and their operations up and running after the June flood.

Applicant criteria included being located in one of the affected counties, being in good standing with the state, having a verifiable business at the time of the June flooding and a plan for usage of the grant assistance.

“It was enough to, maybe, make payroll or pay the rent or replace some equipment that was lost,” Keith Burdette, state commerce secretary, previously said.

“We think it’s had a positive effect and we think it’s a model to be used in other situations.”

Initial funding for RISE West Virginia, which launched in July with a combination of public and private dollars, was $2 million.

Merry Christmas 2016

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New FAFSA Goal Set for West Virginia High School Seniors

The Free Press WV

By April 15, those with the College Foundation of West Virginia want to see the number of 12th graders in the Mountain State completing the FAFSA, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, climb to 60 percent.

“We know that the jobs of the state of West Virginia are changing,” said Dr. Paul Hill, chancellor for the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, noting that 50 percent of the jobs being created within the state require some for of post-secondary education.

“Because our state economy is being driven increasingly more by those who have attained post-secondary education, this is the first step in getting students to pursue that education and move into the workforce,” he said.

The Mountain State is not far from the new goal.

Among members of the Class of 2016, the FAFSA completion rate was 58.5 percent.

The following 46 high schools met or exceeded the 60 percent mark:

Bishop Donahue Memorial High School
Bluefield High School
Braxton County High School
Bridgeport High School
Brooke High School
Cabell Midland High School
Cameron High School
Capital High School
Chapmanville Regional High School
Cross Lanes Christian School
East Hardy High School
Frankfort High School
George Washington High School
Greenbrier East High School
Hedgesville High School
Hundred High School
Hurricane High School
Jefferson High School
Keyser High School
Magnolia High School
Mingo Central High School
Nicholas County High School
Nitro High School
Paden City High School
Paw Paw High School
Pendleton County Middle/High School
Petersburg High School
Pocahontas County High School
Ravenswood High School
Ripley High School
Ritchie County High School
Sissonville High School
Spring Valley High School
Tucker County High School
Tug Valley High School
Tyler Consolidated High School
University High School
Valley High School
Van Junior/Senior High School
Wahama High School
Washington High School
Webster County High School
Wheeling Park High School
Williamstown High School
Winfield High School
Wirt County High School

Updated FAFSA completion data, broken down to the county and school levels, is available HERE.

FAFSAs can be completed via fafsa.gov.

“The key to getting access to all the financial aid programs, whether they be federal or state or institutional, is through filling out that FAFSA form,” Hill said.

Filing the FAFSA allows students to be considered for federal Pell Grants of up to $5,920, the Higher Education Grant Program for as much as $2.700 and other financial aid opportunities.

More information is available at cfwv.com, West Virginia’s free college-planning website.

In past years, the FAFSA application period opened on Jan. 1 and students had to submit information from immediate prior year tax returns. This year, the application period opened on Oct. 1 and students are permitted to use tax returns from 2015, instead of waiting to file for 2016.

“It make it so much easier and, consequently, we’re seeing several thousand applications on the FAFSA form already rolling into our offices right now,” Hill said.

The FAFSA application deadline is April 15, 2017.

~~  Shauna Johnson ~~

DHHR Seeking Applications for Phase Three of Safe at Home West Virginia

The Free Press WV

The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR), Bureau for Children and Families today announced the application period for the third and final phase of Safe at Home West Virginia, an innovative program working to reduce the State’s reliance on in-state and out-of-state group care for youth ages 12-17.

Safe at Home West Virginia uses the wraparound model, a planning process that helps ensure youth grow up in their homes and communities whenever possible. With help from one or more wraparound facilitators, key players in the child’s family work together, coordinate activities, and blend perspectives of the family’s unique situation.

“We are very excited to launch this final phase of Safe at Home, which will provide important services to an additional twenty counties in West Virginia,” said DHHR Cabinet Secretary Karen L. Bowling. “Since implementing the program in October 2015, nearly 475 children have been referred for services with the goal to provide them with the opportunity to lead safe, healthy and successful lives in their home communities.”

DHHR is currently soliciting applications from licensed behavioral health agencies with direct children’s service experience to act as local coordinating agencies for the development and delivery of a high fidelity wraparound model with supporting services in the counties of

    •  Braxton
    •  Calhoun
    •  Clay
    •  Doddridge
    •  Fayette
    •  Gilmer
    •  Jackson
    •  Marshall
    •  McDowell
    •  Mingo
    •  Pleasants
    •  Raleigh
    •  Ritchie
    •  Roane
    •  Tyler
    •  Webster
    •  Wetzel
    •  Wirt
    •  Wood
    •  Wyoming

Start-up grants will be available in the amount of $70,000 for each Wraparound Facilitator the applicant plans to hire.

The selected agencies are tasked with hiring wraparound facilitators responsible for coordinating the individualized services identified for each youth and their family in their homes. Local coordinating agencies are also tasked with providing those services or securing them from other sources.

Agencies wishing to submit applications must submit a Letter of Intent to Apply by December 21, 2016. Applications must be received by 4:00 p.m. on January 12, 2017. Visit www.dhhr.wv.gov/bcf for more information.

Phase three is expected to launch in April 2017. The long-term goal of Safe at Home West Virginia is to serve 12-17 year olds and their families in the state’s 55 counties, providing wraparound services to children, family members, caregivers and foster parents to support developing and maintaining a stable and loving environment.

West Virginia Hunters Check in More Than 2,000 Fall Turkeys in 2016, Up 82% from 2015

The Free Press WV

Preliminary numbers show fall turkey hunters checked in 2,066 turkeys this fall, according to Chris Ryan, supervisor of Game Management Services for the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR). This was the first time in recent history that all 55 counties were open to a fall season.

The fall turkey harvest was up 82 percent from 2015. The top 10 counties were Nicholas (140), Randolph (116), Preston (105), Upshur (92), Webster (91), Wood (84), Greenbrier (74), Mason (64), Wyoming (62) and Monroe (61). The 14 “traditional” fall hunting counties accounted for 37 percent of the total fall turkey harvest.

All six DNR districts had higher harvests compared to 2015. District 3 led the state with a harvest of 564 birds, followed by District 1 (412), District 4 (368), District 6 (275), District 5 (238) and District 2 (209).

“Hunter participation, recruitment of turkeys into the population, and availability of hard mast account for most of the variability in fall turkey harvests,“ Ryan said. “Although acorns were more plentiful in 2016, increased reproduction and having more counties open to fall hunting led to a better harvest, as was predicted in the 2016 Mast Survey and Hunting Outlook.“

The 17-year cicada, which emerged in 2016 across much of the state, increased poult survival in areas of cicada abundance. This high-protein food source helped in turkey reproduction which was noted by an increased number of broods observed throughout much of the State in 2016, according to Ryan.

“In addition, hunters enjoyed the new season format that enabled them to chase this magnificent bird throughout the entire state.”

Fall harvest of wild turkeys in West Virginia, 2012-2016.

County

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

Barbour

30

0

18

0

29

Brooke

7

9

2

6

15

Hancock

11

8

5

8

6

Harrison

26

20

20

28

41

Marion

15

4

6

19

38

Marshall

28

10

22

9

50

Monongalia

18

24

15

25

30

Ohio

12

9

3

6

21

Preston

63

77

53

71

105

Taylor

11

8

5

2

23

Tucker

25

14

25

13

14

Wetzel

14

2

18

0

40

District 1 Subtotal

260

185

192

187

412

Berkeley

18

36

19

30

21

Grant

31

41

17

38

57

Hampshire

22

41

15

35

30

Hardy

30

34

18

31

27

Jefferson

0

0

0

0

8

Mineral

22

28

16

25

22

Morgan

5

14

15

15

9

Pendleton

46

26

31

25

35

District 2 Subtotal

174

220

131

199

209

Braxton

0

0

0

0

43

Clay

0

0

0

0

12

Lewis

0

8

0

25

21

Nicholas

98

39

88

63

140

Pocahontas

79

57

54

62

49

Randolph

77

59

83

114

116

Upshur

43

28

0

59

92

Webster

58

35

50

48

91

District 3 Subtotal

355

226

275

371

564

Fayette

0

0

0

0

38

Greenbrier

138

64

81

81

74

McDowell

0

33

0

0

30

Mercer

0

0

2

0

27

Monroe

89

71

52

61

61

Raleigh

0

0

0

0

47

Summers

73

42

41

26

29

Wyoming

0

37

35

41

62

District 4 Subtotal

300

247

211

209

368

Boone

0

0

0

0

21

Cabell

12

4

0

0

12

Kanawha

0

0

0

0

38

Lincoln

0

14

0

0

26

Logan

0

0

0

0

25

Mason

41

26

33

43

64

Mingo

0

0

0

0

8

Putnam

21

2

0

19

27

Wayne

0

17

0

0

17

District 5 Subtotal

74

63

33

62

238

Calhoun

14

8

0

0

19

Doddridge

0

0

0

0

12

Gilmer

0

6

0

0

10

Jackson

39

18

37

24

48

Pleasants

5

4

3

6

7

Roane

0

2

12

0

21

Ritchie

0

0

0

0

26

Tyler

6

1

8

15

18

Wirt

23

19

23

17

30

Wood

44

20

31

47

84

District 6 Subtotal

131

78

114

109

275

State Total

1,294

1,019

956

1,137

2,066

Deer Hunters In West Virginia Harvest 45,871 Bucks During The 2016 Buck Firearms Season

The Free Press WV

Preliminary data collected from the electronic game checking system indicate deer hunters in West Virginia harvested 45,871 bucks during the two-week buck firearms season which ran from November 21 through December 03, 2016, according to Paul Johansen, chief of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR) Wildlife Resources Section.

The 2016 buck harvest is down 25 percent from the 2015 harvest of 60,814. The top 10 counties for buck harvest were:  Preston (1,769), Randolph (1,610), Jackson (1,482), Greenbrier (1,445), Ritchie (1,414), Upshur (1,392), Mason (1,266), Lewis (1,238), Hampshire (1,183) and Wood (1,182).

The buck harvest decreased in all six DNR districts. The buck season harvest was predicted to decrease in the Mast Survey and Hunting Outlook brochure, primarily because of an increased number of acorns in 2016 compared to acorn crop production in 2015. In addition, high winds across much of the state limited deer activity and decreased success rates on the first two days of the season. 

“Hunters continued to use the electronic game checking system established in 2015,“ Johansen said. “Hunters enjoyed the ease of being able to check deer and other game using the telephone, internet or by stopping at a license agent.“

Johansen reminds hunters that several days of deer hunting opportunity still remain for 2016, including the remainder of the muzzleloader season, which runs through Saturday, December 10. The traditional antlerless deer season in selected counties on both public and private land opens Thursday, December 15, and runs through Saturday, December 17. The Youth, Class Q/QQ and Class XS deer season for antlerless deer will be open December26 and 27 in any county with a firearms deer season. This will be followed by the reopening of Class N/NN antlerless deer season December 28-31 in specified counties or portions of counties.

West Virginia Buck Firearms Season Harvest, 2012-2016
County 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Barbour 1177 1109 886 1281 1,094
Brooke 407 389 251 286 267
Hancock 320 273 200 208 206
Harrison 1385 1301 930 1418 1,132
Marion 1089 1130 702 1190 762
Marshall 1309 1051 707 818 726
Monongalia 1297 1107 689 1023 824
Ohio 466 399 232 290 266
Preston 2158 1741 1526 2046 1,769
Taylor 684 635 453 732 579
Tucker 649 527 494 783 726
Wetzel 1471 1537 891 1144 896
District 1 Subtotal 12,412 11,199 7,961 11,219 9,247
Berkeley 767 871 522 908 732
Grant 1250 1135 783 1304 949
Hampshire 1588 1846 1094 1947 1,183
Hardy 1429 1447 920 1709 1,073
Jefferson 526 445 385 499 421
Mineral 1181 1345 835 1335 920
Morgan 602 743 412 678 433
Pendleton 1373 1163 861 1297 1,088
District 2 Subtotal 8,716 8,995 5,812 9,677 6,799
Braxton 1401 1626 921 1660 1,100
Clay 528 475 329 618 388
Lewis 1365 1692 1166 1875 1,238
Nicholas 1212 824 871 1274 1,041
Pocahontas 1152 961 831 1008 920
Randolph 1804 1329 1291 1659 1,610
Upshur 1283 1396 1009 1704 1,392
Webster 817 717 632 1080 941
District 3 Subtotal 9,562 9,020 7,050 10,878 8,630
Fayette 996 835 725 1214 885
Greenbrier 1875 1509 1372 1816 1,445
McDowell 0 0 0 0 0
Mercer 682 536 402 843 633
Monroe 1569 1466 1004 1462 1,092
Raleigh 749 579 506 895 643
Summers 1077 973 657 999 653
Wyoming 0 0 0 0 0
District 4 Subtotal 6,948 5,898 4,666 7,229 5,351
Boone 898 725 519 868 573
Cabell 750 763 421 641 672
Kanawha 1164 1380 730 1547 1,053
Lincoln 1319 1124 720 1312 842
Logan 0 0 0 0 0
Mason 1676 1495 1002 1488 1,266
Mingo 0 0 0 0 0
Putnam 1191 1210 565 1114 987
Wayne 1041 870 528 963 814
District 5 Subtotal 8,039 7,567 4,485 7,933 6,207
Calhoun 770 1164 504 1063 703
Doddridge 950 1243 615 1376 941
Gilmer 911 1427 669 1435 790
Jackson 1630 1917 1107 1870 1,482
Pleasants 371 438 273 492 332
Ritchie 1512 2091 1123 2024 1,414
Roane 1391 1893 927 1846 1,172
Tyler 922 1000 566 1064 850
Wirt 846 1091 681 1152 771
Wood 1403 1580 1011 1556 1,182
District 6 Subtotal 10,706 13,844 7,476 13,878 9,637
State Total 56,383 56,523 37,450 60,814 45,871

WV County Breakdown of the General Election

The Free Press WV

We know that Republicans scored big (or at least maintained their advantage) in statewide and Legislative races in the General Election earlier this month, but what about county races?  Patti Hamilton, the executive director of the West Virginia Association of Counties, has broken down the races for assessor, circuit clerk, county clerk, county commission, prosecutor and sheriff in all 55 counties. Here’s what she found:

–The biggest turnover was in the position for sheriff, where there are 29 new office holders. However, Hamilton points out that’s due in part to term limits that prevent the sheriff from serving more than two consecutive terms.

–The highest turnover after sheriff was for county commission.  Fifty-six of the 169 commission positions were open and 34 (61 percent) of the positions were filled by a new face.

–West Virginia has 19 new assessors, 12 new circuit clerks, 13 new county clerks, 34 new commissioners, 14 new prosecutors and 29 new sheriffs, for a total of 121 new county office holders. Of those 121, 63 are Democrats and 58 are Republicans.

–Of the 19 new assessors, 11 are Democrat and 8 Republican. The 12 new circuit clerks are split evenly between the two parties. Eight of the new county clerks are Democrats and five are Republicans. Twenty-one of the 34 new commissioners are Republicans and 13 are Democrats.  Of the 14 new prosecutors, eight are Republicans and five are Democrats. Twenty of the 29 new sheriffs are Democrats and nine are Republicans.

–Democrats hold all county offices in eleven counties: Boone, Brooke, Calhoun, Clay, Logan, Marion, McDowell, Mingo, Ohio, Webster and Wetzel.  Republicans hold all county offices in eight counties: Doddridge, Grant, Mineral, Morgan, Preston, Putnam, Tyler and Upshur.

–The biggest changes came in Grant, Harrison, Jefferson, Mercer, Morgan, Nicholas, Wirt and Wood counties; each elected four new county officials.  Only Gilmer County had no change in county officials; all incumbents were re-elected.

–Jefferson County was tough on former legislators. Outgoing Democratic State Senator Herb Snyder lost his bid for county clerk.  Dale Manuel, a Democratic former House of Delegates member, lost his race for re-election to the county commission. Outgoing Cabell County House of Delegates member Jim Morgan had better luck; he won a commission seat. Wayne County Democrat Rick Thompson, a former Speaker of the House of Delegates, was elected Sheriff.

And finally, Hamilton says she’s retiring June 30th after serving in that capacity for 20 years.  Hamilton has been a strong, professional voice for the West Virginia Association of Counties. She will be missed.

~~  Hoppy Kercheval ~~

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