Abandoned Buildings Grant to Provide Momentum for City of Glenville
The Gilmer County Economic Development Association has received a technical assistance grant valued at $10,000 through the 2015 Brownfields, Abandoned, Dilapidated (BAD) Buildings Technical Assistance program to address barriers to the reuse and redevelopment of abandoned and dilapidated buildings in the City of Glenville.
The BAD Buildings Program grant was awarded to The Gilmer County Economic Development Association by the Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center. The program provides technical assistance and expertise to assist communities in West Virginia to create a redevelopment plan for its strategically located abandoned, vacant, and dilapidated properties.
The City of Glenville was one of only 9 projects awarded statewide to receive a 2015 BAD Buildings Program technical assistance grant.
City of Glenville Mayor Dennis Fitzpatrick said he was supportive of Mr. Campbell in this endeavor. The award of the BAD Buildings technical assistance grant will provide the necessary tools and resources for improving planning and property utilization in the City of Glenville according to Jeff Campbell. The Bad Buildings award and the associated planning activities will provide a forum and processes to improve planning for all community stakeholders. An initial information meeting for all interested community stakeholders is being planned and an announcement will be made in the coming weeks.
Luke Elser, BAD Buildings Program Manager says, “The BAD Buildings model provides an initial stepping stone for revitalization efforts by initiating redevelopment progress and spurring community involvement. The NBAC looks forward to working with the City of Glenville and its community partners on this project.”
The BAD Buildings Program is funded through a grant from the Benedum Foundation through the WVU Foundation, a private non-profit corporation that generates, receives and administers private gifts for West Virginia University.
Information about the BAD Buildings Program can be found at www.wvbrownfields.org. The Northern WV Brownfields Assistance Center is a program of the West Virginia Water Research Institute, located at WVU’s National Research Center for Coal & Energy.
They all look so helpless standing around there just watching the water run out. What can they do? The point to get from this is that prevention is the only sure way to keep our communities safe, whether it’s for coal mining, fracking for gas or oil, or installing a pipeline over steep mountain ridges. There is too much at stake to continue to abuse our state in this way. Water is not a renewable resource. We must act now to protect it.
Abandoned Mine Blows Out Creating Damages and Concerns
Glenville, WV - Responders in Gilmer County were called to the scene of an abandoned mine that blew-out about 3:30 AM Thursday morning, March 26, 2015.
Gilmer County first responders showed up at the intersection of WV Highway 5 and Lynch Run Road, an area between Glenville and Sand Fork.
Officials said the mine face gave way causing water, mud, wood, coal and other debris to flood into the roadway shutting down the highway for a period of time and spilling into the Little Kanawha River.
Officials are trying to figure out what caused the mine to blow, but believe it was a result of melted snow and heavy rain flooding the area.
Gilmer Fire Chief Martin Hess said, “The main thing is no body got hurt. We’ve notified water companies and plants from here to Parkersburg about the situation so they can close their intakes and not take any water in.“
The Division of Highways and the Gilmer County Volunteer Fire Department cleared the road around 7:00 AM.
The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP), along with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Bureau of Public Health, and Gilmer County PSD have been called to the scene to check for contaminants.
Testing on the water will continue throughout the day.
PUBLIC NOTICE: Gilmer County Commission Special Meeting - 03.27.15
STATE OF WEST VIRGINIA,
COUNTY OF GILMER, TO-WIT:
I, Larry B. Chapman, President of the County Commission of Gilmer County, West Virginia, in concurrence with John D. Bennett and Brian Kennedy, Commissioners of said Commission, hereby call and appoint a Special Session of the County Commission of Gilmer County to be held at the courthouse in said County on Friday, March 27, 2015 at 9:00 a.m. in the County Commission Chambers to transact the following business:
To approve and adopt the Budget for FY2015-2016
Given under my hand this 20th day of March, 2015.
Larry B. Chapman, President
Gilmer County Commission
CommunityConcerns™: Is the State’s information for the Hays City School trustworthy?
There is an article in the March 24, 2015 issue of the Charleston Gazette pertaining to an open admission that the WV School Building Authority (SBA) mismanaged the way school building projects were funded and managed.
David Sneed, a Governor Tomblin appointee, is the executive director of the SBA and Governor Tomblin is its president. Gilmer County’s citizens know about the State’s unparalleled boondoggle for Cedar Creek in which the SBA and the WVBOE were intricately involved.
The SBA’s belated admission of past ineptness brings up community concerns which have not been properly addressed for the Hays City school project funded by the SBA and approved by the WVBOE.
There is increasing concern in the County about the Hays City site being in a zone with flooding potential, and there are concerns about the site being used to dump dangerous materials. These concerns are valid for citizens truly interested in protecting the health and safety of children and school system employees who will be in the Hays City School.
Assurances were given by the State and Mr. Gabriel Devono, the County’s WVBOE-appointed superintendent, that there is no valid basis for concerns and everything is just fine. Just fine? Based on what?
Consider the study the State referenced to dismiss concerns about flooding potential. Who commissioned the study, who supervised it, who conducted the study and was the proper technical expertise involved, were there any conflicts of interests, why were its results not released to the public? Because adequate technical expertise is unavailable in Gilmer County, were the final results subjected to an independent and rigorous peer review by eminently qualified and unbiased experts?
The U. S. Army Corps of Engineers is the preeminent expert on flooding potential. Was that organization involved in reviewing the results? What about the engineering department at West Virginia University? It is one of the finest departments in the County. Was that department or its equivalent involved in critiquing the technical accuracy of the results?
What about the site contamination issue? Citizens were told that core samples were taken and everything checked out. The same set of questions addressed above applies to final results for that work.
When business is done the way it has been done with intervention in Gilmer County, especially with the secrecy imposed by the WVBOE and the SBA, is there any wonder that Gilmer County’s citizens have serious questions?
How can anyone conclude with reasonable certainty that Governor Tomblin’s administration fulfilled its most important constitutional responsibility which is to protect citizens it is legally obligated to serve?
The cited Gazette article by Ryan Quinn fits perfectly with the the State’s muddling.
The SBA’s Scott Raines is quoted in the article. He admitted that the SBA often approved funding without having accurate access to information and he said that it “led to architects”. Specific names of architects were not given.
Buildings were designed that were thousands of square feet larger than the SBA had agreed to fund, and some schools even contained two gyms.
For the gyms an extra 7,000 feet were added at $215 per sq ft to worsen budget overruns by another 1.5 million dollars.
After all these years and hundreds of millions of dollars being spent the SBA’s bureaucrats plan to study its performance issues.
The SBA plans to hire construction managers from now on to oversee projects it funds. This is a clear admission that competent oversight had not occurred previously.
The managers will be responsible for the design, cost estimates, construction, and managing contractors.
To indicate how bad the mismanagement has been, it was reported that construction managers could be paid about 5% of the total construction costs for a new school to ensure that SBA funds would be spent more efficiently!
For a 12 million dollar school that would be $600,000 for a construction manager. Not bad money at all.
Dr. Mark Manchin ran the SBA for years before he took a new job to be Harrison County’s superintendent of schools. He should be given a fair chance to give his side of the story.
Wasn’t the SBA responsible somehow for overseeing county facilities plans too? That role should be alarming to West Virginians who learned of the Gazette’s revelations.
The Gazette report suggests that there was SBA mismanagement regarding site studies prior to selecting school building sites to include scientifically valid studies of environmental issues similar to those for the the Hays City school site.
With this new exposure information coming, out Governor Tomblin should stop the Hays City project and let Gilmer County start over.
Who in their right minds with common sense would be for a school in a location in the first place if there were any concerns at all about flooding and site contamination?
Nothing was said in the article about the
WVBOE. It is always involved with new school projects and we know what that got us at Cedar Creek and the Hays City project.
Would the GFP print the full Gazette article so Gilmer County’s citizens will know what we have been dealing with from Charleston?
By Gilmer Knew Already on 03.25.2015
Sooo…..what happened here?
The SBA previously turned down this exact Hays City site BECAUSE it IS IN A FLOOD PLAIN?
Apparently this was a choice made to get themselves out of their “muddled Cedar Creek” decision that has cost Gilmer County thousands of dollars?
By John R. on 03.25.2015
It is said “we are supposed to learn from mistakes.” Apparently the WVBOE does not believe in the quote. Of course not, because it is not their money or children. Once people are not logical, rational, planners, they keeping doing the same stupid mistakes over and over, hoping to get a different results. This is the case here. Bunch of idiots.
By they are not tinkers on 03.25.2015
I keep hearing what Mr. Divano has said: “Gilmer board made the decision to build the school at cedar creek and state approve it.“ Is this true? How could have Gilmer board approved it if they had/have no control over facilities? Does Mr. Divano stop a second to hear himself talking? What he says on the videos of the meetings does not make sense. Maybe the state is telling him that, and since he is not asking them the simple question above, he must be a ‘Yes Man’?
What do you say Dr. Simmons, did the board make the decision on the Cedar Creek and Hays City?
How about the other board members? Not you, we already know you a ‘Yes person’. Thank you
By Money talks and logic walks on 03.25.2015
Quoting the 3/23/15 Gazette: “Raines said SBA board members often approve funding for school construction in counties without much information about the proposed scope of those projects. This has led to architects-paid directly by the counties, not the SBA-designing school buildings that are thousands of square feet larger than the SBA agreed to fund.“
Go to the SBA home page today. Scroll down to April 28, 2014 needs Grant awards made by the authority. Local Funds for New Gilmer County ES now $1,117,977 plus $1,000,000 QZAB.
When are these meetings taking place that ups the ante for Gilmer over and over? Last heard from a Board meeting it was $983,000. In March of 2014 SBA assessment local share was at $878,177.??? How is it the cost to citizens goes up and down like the river on a flood plain and nobody hears about it? Are all these changes typos like the ones Blankenship said were on the excess levy to get it passed? Not likely.
How is all this happening without public meetings? The people doing this are paid with public funds. The SBA meets quarterly. What is going on behind Charleston’s closed doors?
Governor, you are the President of the School Building Authority. WV BOE members sit with you.
By Investigation Needed on 03.25.2015
This G Devono is not any different than that R Blankenship. When those two say “the Board” they mean themselves acting as “the Board” under State BOE authority. Both included “the Board” President when support was needed. Nobody else. Watch the meetings. When’s the last time you heard either ask for “the Board” opinion on anything?
By No More Excess Levy Under Intervention on 03.25.2015
Actually illegal transportation times for elementary school children.More stress on youngsters resulting in poor educational results. That’s what Hayes City School gives us. Fewer jobs, less funding, devastated communities.Future indoor swimming pool?
By Gilmer Gets Nothing on 03.25.2015
People need to get this straight!
The Gilmer County School Board did NOT, repeat NOT, have anything to do with selection of the Cedar Creek/Crooked Run location or the Hays City-Elementary…... in the Flood Plain Site!
The powers to be are trying to MAKE IT APPEAR our local Gilmer Board was involved, in a very futile attempt to pin the blame elsewhere.
The Gilmer County School Board since DAY ONE has had NO SAY in any facilities planning!
Site selection has been done and is TOTALLY OWNED BY THE WEST VIRGINIA BOARD OF EDUCATION! NO ONE ELSE!
By Give Credit Where Credit is Due on 03.25.2015
Anyone who would state our local board was involved in the process of building locations is either misinformed or flat telling lies.
The state did not follow even the basic proper CEFP meeting formats. Meetings not advertised, no call to order, no proper votes, no meeting minutes.
They cannot even show a good cross-section of the community involved on the CEFP committee. Just their chosen cronies that would automatically give them the amen vote.
Devano has even stated paperwork cannot not be found. And for sure no newspaper clips to prove meetings were advertised.
You see, as the state BOE muddles along they do not even attempt to follow their own policies.
By parent on 03.25.2015
1: an unimpaired condition :soundness
2: adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values
3: the quality or state of being complete or undivided :completeness
Have we seen this in Charleston’s dealing with Gilmer County?
Unless lies, secrecy, partial truths, closed door meetings. back room deals, total lack of transparency have been added to Webster’s dictionary?
Maybe we have an outdated edition?
By in-teg-ri-ty ? on 03.25.2015
Thank you Gilmer Free Press for keeping us informed as to what is happening in our county and covering it for us as it is very much appreciated. A good reporter reports the good…the bad…and the ugly as it is all news regardless and the public needs to know whatever it is. I thank you for being that kind of reporter.
And I love the new format for Gilmer Free Press.
Keep up the good work.
On Monday, March 23, 2015 Chief Judge Richard A. Facemire presided over Court in Gilmer County.
• Seven juvenile cases were heard
• State of West Virginia vs. Christina Marks
She was scheduled for sentencing but since her diagnosis and classification was not complete, her sentence was reset for Monday, June 22, 2015 at 9:10 AM.
She is represented by Bryan Hinkle of Buckhannon.
• One fugitive from justice, namely Nelson Villanueva waived extradition back to New York and authorities have until 4:00 PM Wednesday, April 01, 2015 to pick him up at Central Regional Jail or he will be released.
Clinton Bischoff of Summersville represented the fugitive.
• One civil matter Elder Oil Co vs. P&C Oil & Gas Inc.
The case is now set for status on Monday, July 20, 2015 at 9:00 AM.
Gary Morris of Weston represents plaintiffs and R. Terry Butcher represents defendants.
• State of West Virginia vs. Kyle Britner
He was before the Court for pretrial but Britner was a no show and Judge Facemire directed the Circuit Clerk to issue a capias but to hold it until Noon on Wednesday before issuing it.
Folk Festival Raising Money for Repairs of Little Kanawha Valley Bank Building
Located on Howard Street overlooking downtown Glenville is the Little Kanawha Valley Bank building. The Little Kanawha Valley Bank received its charter in 1901, and the building was constructed the same year. In 1906 the bank merged with the First National Bank forming the Kanawha Union Bank, and the Classic Revival-style building was occupied by until 1916 when the bank outgrew the small facility. Originally located on Powell Street, it was moved to its present location in 1977 when the Kanawha Union Bank donated the building to the West Virginia State Folk Festival. The building has served various functions since 1916 and has been moved three times, but is now situated on a lot roughly a block from its original location.
The building is architecturally significant for its pressed metal material and its use of classical detail – the bank’s sheet metal exterior is its most notable characteristic. Pressed metal was a popular building material during the early twentieth century, and the low cost of the material allowed the bank to imitate the impressive classical fronts of larger, urban financial institutions. Since the 18th century, American buildings have displayed ornamentation in a variety of metals which was primarily reserved for grand houses and large commercial and religious buildings. Technological advances after 1800 led to a greater variety of metals available at a lower cost, but sheet metal became less popular after the 1930’s. Many buildings that had been covered with metal were stripped, and those that were originally covered with the metal during the turn of the century are few. Although the Little Kanawha Valley Bank has been moved several times, it still retains its original sheet metal exterior that it had in 1901.
For many years, the building was home to the late Claude Kemper’s “Birds of My Hollow” exhibit during the Folk Festival, and this tradition continues with Ron and Lynne Kemper. The building is also home to the paper quilling demonstrations by Reita Marks during the festival. The Folk Festival would like to continue to use the building for these purposes, as well as for other artistic purposes throughout the year. In order for this to continue, repairs to the roof and windows are urgently necessary.
The Little Kanawha Valley Bank is a historic treasure that only adds to the legacy of the downtown area, but it has had little attention in recent years. Its most urgent need is a new roof, which requires that the Folk Festival committee conduct fundraising activities. The results of a successful fundraising effort toward the repair of the building can only be a positive for the Glenville and Gilmer County communities.
The Little Kanawha Valley Bank building was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1991 and is now under federal protection. Contributions for the maintenance and improvements to the building are welcome and may be sent to the West Virginia State Folk Festival, P.O. Box 362, Glenville, WV 26351. Donations may also be made online at www.gofundme.com/littlekanawhabank.
Glenville State College Assistant Professor of Special Education Tara Cosco has successfully completed her Doctor of Education degree. The now Dr. Cosco defended her dissertation earlier in March at Northcentral University in Prescott Valley, Arizona. The degree focused on Technology and E-Learning.
Her dissertation, titled ‘Adult Student Preferences for Communication Media in an Interactive Online Environment,‘ explored college and university students’ use and perceptions of communication tools in an interactive online environment. She wanted to determine if the tools help students learn in an interactive environment and if the tools help them learn in relation to their learning styles.
GSC’s Dr. Tara Cosco with her congratulatory cake
after successfully defending her dissertation
“The problem that I wanted to address is that the availability of Internet courses does not automatically create quality learning experiences prompting a pedagogical dilemma for educators in how to foster interaction when students and teachers are separated. The specific problem addressed by my research was that instructors do not know how students perceive the communication tools in an interactive course that has multiple tools and if those tools help students learn according to their individual learning styles. I interviewed 20 college and university students from approximately 20 different institutions who had taken four or more interactive online courses using multiple tools. Data consisted of over 200 pages of interview transcripts and over 50,000 words. From that data, seven themes emerged from which I was able to frame and complete the dissertation,“ Cosco explained.
“Now that the degree is over, I can reflect and know that I am grateful for the experience and opportunity to further my education. Many of my friends and family members encouraged me through the difficulties and celebrated successes with me throughout this journey; their encouragement helped me reach this goal and I could not have done it without them!“ she said.
Cosco has 15 years of experience in the education field. She taught special education for six years in the West Virginia public school system and then taught at an independent school in Princeton, New Jersey for three years. She has been an assistant professor at Glenville State College for seven years. In addition to her teaching duties at GSC, she also serves as faculty advisor for the international education honor society Kappa Delta Pi.
Her official graduation ceremony will be held over the summer in Arizona. Cosco hopes to attend with family and friends.
The Glenville State College Honors Program is hosting a Spaghetti Dinner on Sunday, March 29, 2015 from 11:30 AM until 5:00 PM at the Gilmer County Recreation Center.
Donations will cover salad, spaghetti, and desert. Carry-out orders will be welcome.
We will also raffle Longaberger gift baskets and Vera Bradley purses.
The GSC Honors Program is hosting the dinner and raffle to raise money to send some of its students to study abroad in London in May, 2015.
The trip is being sponsored by Dr. Sallie Anglin and Dr. Megan Gibbons in the GSC Department of Language and Literature through EF (Education First). The trip is designed for students who have taken at least one 200 level English course in order to further their studies of English literature and theater in London, Oxford, and Stratford, England. The trip will include walking tours of literary sites, including the birthplace of Shakespeare, the site of his famous Globe Theater, acting workshops, and theatrical performances.
This trip will give GSC students a direct, hands-on learning experience, and exposure to international culture.
Please contact Dr. Jonathan Minton at 304.462.6322 or
for more information about the dinner and raffle.