Virginia Gay Tucker Burleson 73, of Brownsville

Alaska Jane “Cookie” Dillon 63, of Calvin

Jo Ann O’Dell Fox
of Circleville, Ohio

Elza Hammons
92, of Camden on Gauley

Jill Rae Hodge
51, of Beech Glen

Rose Agnes Gregory Kessler
92, of Richwood

Zelda Marie Lewis
87, of Mt. Lookout

Daphene Virginia Pike
89, of Mt. Nebo

Beverly “Janet” (Cunningham) Ward
63, of Coraopolis, Penn.

Nancy K. (Roark) Wells
69, of Berwyn, Pa.


Hilda Wilson
88, of Nettie








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County Financial matters addressed by Commission

The continuing recent decrease in the collection of county property taxes was the major topic of discussion at the Nicholas County Commission meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 20.

The Commission also received an update on the training for the recently authorized county Hazardous Materials Emergency Response Team, authorized an application for a Governor’s Community Participation Grant and reappointed several people to commissions.

Present for the meeting were Commission President Ken Altizer, Commissioner John Miller and Commissioner Lyle Neal.

County financial matters
Nicholas County Sheriff David Hopkins and Chief Tax Deputy Angie Evans came before the Commission concerning county finances.

Sheriff Hopkins said he had been advised by Nicholas County Assessor Ernie Dennison that property tax collections are down several hundred thousand dollars over the past several months.

The sheriff said this has resulted in his having to draw money from a $2.9 million money market account that the county has had at First Community Bank for a number of years. In July 2014, December 2014 and then again last week, he has had to draw money from the account in order for the county to be able to pay its checks, since there weren’t enough funds in the county’s general account. The three withdrawals totaled $1.6 million, leaving $1.3 million in the money market account. He added that the county also has a $250,000 and $500,000 certificates of deposit at the bank.

Hopkins said it is anticipated that with people receiving income tax refunds, they will come in and pay their property taxes that are due, which should help tax collections increase.

The Commission noted that an auditor from the state is expected to come and review the county’s finances in April or before, and could possibly find some additional funds within the budget for the county to pay checks.




The small things...

With early forecasts predicting aound 8 inches of snow over two days, some snow lovers were disappointed with the small amount that actually fell. So, instead of looking for the beautiful snow-covered scenes, take some time to admire the intricate beauty that an individual snowflake has to offer.





School Board looks at snow makeup days options

The Nicholas County Board of Education on Tuesday evening, Jan. 20, reviewed two options for making up days cancelled because of the weather.

The Board also heard from a youth civic action organization in one of the high schools in the county, took action on the after-school activity bus for Nicholas County High School and Summersville Middle School and updated a number of transportation policies to bring them into line with state policies.

Present for the meeting were Board President Dr. Lloyd Adkins, Vice-President Phil Berry and members Bob M. O’Dell, Fred Amick and Darrell White.

School Cancellation makeup days schedule
Nicholas County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Keith Butcher presented to the Board two options for consideration for making up days of school cancelled by weather. Under West Virginia law, all counties are required to make up all days of school cancelled by weather to meet the requirement that all students must attend 180 days of school. As of last week, two days of school in the county had been canceled by weather.

The first of the two makeup schedules, Option A, would make up three of the days missed by using three days of spring break, April 8, 9 and 10. The advantages of this option are that there would be instructional days before the statewide assessment tests are given; preserves the summer break to protect summer employment and summer camps. A disadvantage of this option is that it would negatively impact some families that plan vacations during spring break.

Option B uses days at the end of the calendar up to June 23 and preserves spring break as it is on the calendar.




Man pleads not guilty to sex charges

By Pat Hanna
The Nicholas Chronicle

A tentative trial date of April 14 has been set for a man facing multiple counts of sexual assault and abuse.

John Phillip Bell, 29, was arraigned in Nicholas County Circuit Court on Tuesday, Jan. 20, a week after a grand jury indicted him on three counts of first-degree sexual assault, two counts of first-degree sexual abuse and one count of incest.

The alleged crimes occurred between November 2006 and October 2008 against a girl who was under the age of 12, according to the indictment.

Bell pleaded not guilty to the charges at his arraignment.

He was allowed to remain free on $80,000 bond with the condition that he have no contact with the victim.

Also during the Jan. 20 arraignments:

• Sarah Adkins pleaded not guilty to a direct indictment charging her with two counts of operating or attempting to operate a clandestine drug lab, one count of possession of a substance (pseudophedrine) to be used as a precursor to manufacture methamphetamine and one count of manufacturing a controlled substance (marijuana).

An April 14 trial date was set.

Defense attorney Harley Stollings said the case against Adkins was dismissed two years ago when witnesses did not appear and that any bond would be unnecessary. Circuit Judge Gary Johnson set bond at $10,000.

• Brian Jeremy Bailey pleaded not guilty to one count of delivery of a controlled substance and one count of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance. The substance was identified in the indictment as oxycodone.

His trial was set for April 14. He remained free on $25,000 bond.




Police Matters discussed by Richwood City Council

Maxine Corbett
Richwood Editor

The approval of the third and final reading of an ordinance dealing with Teen Court came at the Jan. 22 meeting of Richwood’s Common Council. That ordinance allows for a fee to be assessed on all violation citations issued.

These additional fines will go to establish and fund a court where teenage offenders appear before a panel of their peers who assess appropriate action for the violation involved.

In his opening remarks, Mayor Robert Johnson assured the public that law enforcement coverage of the City of Richwood, now without any police officers on the payroll, is in place.

State Police Trooper and Nicholas County Deputy coverage will be used while the local Police Department goes through another transition period.

Both Police Chief Chris Cole and the lone officer who had been hired have both resigned, leaving the city once again without police coverage. Mayor Johnson said there are no certified officers among the applications received for employment. He said he will advertise for candidates to fill the vacated jobs.

Mayor Johnson stressed, “It is a challenge to hire certified officers.” In January, 2014, the local department had been closed for lack of certified officers. After Chief Cole had been hired, he was able to add only Dan Simmons to the municipal force. During that time period when Richwood was without a policing staff, the city was covered by state and county officers.

A financial report showed a starting balance for the combined city funds of $67,290. After payments of municipal government invoices of $14,887, Water and Sewer Department bills totaling $9,980, and payroll and 941 taxes, the ending balance would stand at $23,220.




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