County approves wheelchair lift for courtroom

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BUCKHANNON — Upshur County commissioners on Thursday approved plans to install a wheelchair lift for handicapped judges in the Upshur County Circuit Courtroom.
The commission voted to table the item at its June 8 meeting because only one bid from D-C Elevator Company was received in the amount of $66,500, which county administrator Carrie Wallace said exceeded the county’s budgeted amount of $22,800, funds that strictly came from the Courthouse Facility Improvement Authority Grant.
However, at its June 15 meeting, assistant county administrator Tabatha Perry reported that funds had been moved around, making it possible for the commission to accept the bid of D-C Elevator Company and proceed with plans of installing the wheelchair lift for handicapped judges.
“Once we moved around funds we were able to make it to where if you decided you wanted to move forward with the bid award, you would actually come in under the $125,000 that was originally budgeted,” Perry said. “You’d be at the $116,600 and that’s including a contingency, so if you want to move forward the funds are there.”
Perry noted the funds are there because the county maintenance department is completing the work to revamp the courtroom.
“If you stop in there, they’ve actually already removed one of the doors, removed some of the carpet off the walls and it’s looking really good, and the judges have been really pleased with the work as well,” she said. “The other main project will be reconfiguring the juror box, but that will be the last item that they begin on due to the work schedule.”
Perry said the commission had been approved through the Courthouse Facility Improvement Authority Grant for the courtroom wheelchair lift.
Commission president Terry Cutright said, “Well, as long as we’ve got the grant and the money to do it, I say go ahead.”
Commissioner Sam Nolte made a motion to approve accepting the bid from the D-C Elevator Company for the installation of the wheelchair lift. The motion was seconded by commissioner Troy “Buddy” Brady.
Brady said, “I wish those numbers was a little bit less, but with that being said, we do have a grant, so I’ll go ahead and second that.” The motion passed unanimously.
In other business, the commission also approved a request from program director for Community Corrections Cheyenne Walters and home confinement supervisor Cpl. Rodney Rolenson to switch companies providing GPS monitoring devices for their clients. Switching from 3M, which charges $3.20 per day per unit, to SCRAM, which charges $3.19 per day per unit, will result in savings for the county, Rolenson told the commission. SCRAM has also reduced the price of alcohol monitoring devices from $4.27 per day per unit to $4.15 per day per unit, he added.
The Community Corrections Day Report Center is also looking for new office space, as the landlord at its current location of 31 N. Spring Street, is asking for a rent increase of $200 per month, which would bring the rent up from $800 a month to $1,000 a month.
“Right now, we’re looking for other places to rent, and I think we’ve found some that are willing to match what we were paying before,” Rolenson said.
In other news, the commission:
Approved a request from Upshur County Republican Executive Committee Chairwoman Patty Adams to use the courthouse plaza on Tuesday, June 20 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to celebrate West Virginia’s birthday with refreshments. The commission also agreed to donate two tables and 10 chairs.
Approved the appointment of Virginia Burnside-Croaff to the Upshur County Youth Camp Board. Her term will begin on June 1, 2017 and expire on May 23, 2023.
Approved the resignation of Aaron Harris from the Upshur County Fire Board, effective June 30.
Approved the temporary full-time employment of Mildred “Jeanne” Zickefoose at her current rate of pay, effective on or around Aug. 15 for no more than 12 weeks. Ms. Zickefoose will continue to work part time in her current position as administrative assistant in the addressing and mapping department, but will also work part time as a commission assistant during the upcoming short-term vacancy expected in the commission office.
Received correspondence from Gov. Jim Justice announcing the STOP Violence Against Women Act grant award to the Upshur County Commission in the amount of $26,496. The funds provide for the enhancement and continuation of the Upshur County STOP Team to improve the criminal justice system’s response to victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and dating violence.
Received correspondence from Austin Caperton, cabinet secretary of the W.Va. DEP, reappointing G. Paul Richter to the board of directors of the Upshur County Solid Waste Authority, effective July 1.
Received correspondence from Charles K. McKinney, assistant chief inspector/chief inspector of the Division of the Office of the State Auditor, enclosing the report on applying agreed-upon procedures of the Upshur County Magistrate Court for the period ending Dec. 31, 2016. The report is available for public review in the Upshur County Commission office.

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