By Peggy Mackenzie
A Greenbrier Health Department representative asked the Greenbrier County Commission to allow litter control officers to write citations to violators at the Tuesday night meeting. Complaints of illegal garbage littering is a nuisance and is an invitation for rats and other disease-carrying vermin, she said. The Greenbrier Health Department was recently awarded a grant of $3,000 by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to be used for personnel and mileage reimbursement for the litter control officer program. Additionally, she said, WV code clearly states that enforcement of the laws and rules that protect health and ensure safety are authorized. Other West Virginia county health departments are able to write citations, she said.
In seeking authorization for the citations, she said, County Prosecutor Patrick Via opposed writing of citations until he had reviewed the code. Via, instead, recommended the health department seek the support of law enforcement in issuing citations.
The representative said the health department is trying to streamline the cost of their efforts when a complaint of unlawful disposal of litter occurs. So, when law enforcement is brought in to handle the complaint, it is then examined and evaluated a second time, requiring additional time and costs. The goal of efficiency and cost cutting is not achieved.
The commission determined that they could not act on this topic without the prosecutor’s authorization, and they opted to table the issue until further information comes to light from the prosecutor.
In other business:
• A new hire was approved for the county’s home confinement department, naming Amy Nanney, who will fill the vacancy of the secretary/officer position.
• Darlene Zobrist, a qualified White Sulphur Springs resident, was appointed to the Board of Zoning Appeals.
•The Greenbrier County Commission approved the contract for a $7,000 grant, with a $3,000 match from arts and rec fund, for the Historic Landmark Commission’s final phase of the survey project covering the assets of Greenbrier County, according to Doug Hylton. Hylton said the six-year project will be completed with this final contract. There are 43 properties and districts listed on the National Register in the county, one of which is a National Historic Landmark.
• The commission also signed a Community Participation Grant contract for the 4-H Energy Express Program of $2,000.