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Davis & Elkins College hosted the 47th annual Eastern Regional Science Fair for middle and senior high school students this spring and presented a little over two dozen awards for outstanding scientific presentations. The two-day event attracted 41 entries from students in Barbour, Pendleton, Pocahontas, Randolph, Taylor, Tucker, Upshur and Webster counties.

Senior high overall honors were awarded to: First place and winner of $250 – Dakota Cook and Paden Rightsell, Pendleton County High School; Second place and winner of $150 – Madison Manly, Pendleton County High School; Third place and winner of $100 – Maria Pomales, Pendleton County High School; and Honorable mention – Corrine McDaniel, Philip Barbour High School.

Middle school overall honors were awarded to: First place and winner of $125 - Andrew Harper, Pendleton County Middle School; Second place and winner of $75 – Morgan Manly, Pendleton County Middle School; and Third place and winner of $50 - Jessica Melvin, Kasson Middle School.

The Davis & Elkins College Chi Beta Phi Award for best use of scientific method was presented to: Senior high winner Dakota Cook and Paden Rightsell, Pendleton County High School, and middle school winner, Andrew Harper, Pendleton County Middle School.

Middle school winners by category were: Applied Science: first place - Mykal Hoffman, Belington Middle School; second place – Anna Ruf, Belington Middle School; third place – Thomas Davis, Pendleton County Middle School; and honorable mention – Austin Davis, Belington Middle School.

Middle school Biology and Environmental Science: first place – Jessica Melvin, Kasson Middle School; second place – Zoe Payne, Belington Middle School; third place – JT Ward, Belington Middle School; honorable mention – Moriah Mitchell, Kasson Middle School, and Micah Harris, Kasson Middle School.

Middle school Physical Science: first place – Andrew Harper, Pendleton County Middle School; second place – Jordan McGee, Kasson Middle School; Third place – Brandon Kyle, Belington Middle School.

Middle school Physiology & Behavior winners were: First place – Morgan Manly, Pendleton County Middle School; second place – Kayla Lamkin, Philippi Middle School; third place – Madison Sites, Pendleton County Middle School; honorable mention – Colby Nestor, Kasson Middle School.

Middle school Team Projects winners were: first place – Jama Marshall and Stephanie Riel, Kasson Middle School; second place – Allison Phillips and Sarah Reed, Kasson Middle School; third place – Nathan Riccio and Tanner Talbott, Belington Middle School.

The annual event includes student competition as well as Saturday morning science demonstrations and hands-on workshops for participants provided by D&E faculty.

For more information, please visit the College website at www.dewv.eduor call 304-637-1243.

 

The Law Enforcement Section of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources will be participating in Operation Dry Water June 27-29, 2014, as part of a nationally coordinated effort to reduce the number of accidents and fatalities related to boating under the influence (BUI). The mission of Operation Dry Water also brings awareness and education to recreational boaters about the dangers of alcohol and drug use on the water.

During Operation Dry Water, being held the weekend of June 27-29, officers will be out in force looking for boaters whose blood alcohol content (BAC) exceeds the state limit of .08. This weekend will include increased patrols as well as boater education on impaired boat operations. Impaired boaters can expect to be arrested or face other serious penalties.

"We are dedicated to keeping boaters safe on our waters. Boating is a safe and enjoyable pastime when people stay alert and follow the rules,” said Lt. Tim Coleman state coordinator of the WVDNR’s boating safety education program. "You will see our officers out on the water looking for boaters who are operating a vessel under the influence.”

Boating under the influence of drugs or alcohol continues to be a major problem across the nation. U.S. Coast Guard data reveals that alcohol is the primary contributing factor in recreational boating fatalities. Intoxicated boat operators and passengers run a significantly increased risk of being involved in a fatal boating accident.

Operation Dry Water is a nationwide education and enforcement initiative launched by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) in 2009 in partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard.

Operation Dry Water 2014 is a joint program of West Virginia, the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, and the U.S. Coast Guard. For more information, visit www.operationdrywater.org.

 

ELKINS COMMON COUNCIL REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING AGENDA

June 19, 2014   7:00 p.m.

1. Invocation and Pledge of Allegiance

2. Call to order and roll call

3. Agenda adjustments

The following agenda items were added or changed more than two business days before this meeting, as per the Open Governmental Meetings Act (W. Va. Code § 6-9A) and W. Va. Ethics Commission Open Meetings Advisory Opinion 2004-10.

a. Ordinance 181: Rules regarding outside junk storage.

4. Public comment

5. Consent calendar

a. Minutes proposed for the regular meeting of June 5, 2014.

6. New business

a. Ordinance 178: Revising fire-service fees. Final of three readings.

b. Ordinance 180: Revising hotel/motel taxes. Second of three readings.

c. Ordinance 181: Rules regarding outside junk storage. First of two readings.

d. D. Turner nominated for Board of Zoning Appeals.

e. Resolution 624: Authorizing regular full-time status and establishing a wage for P. Youtzy as a mechanic at the central garage.

f. Resolution 625: Authorizing regular full-time status and establishing a wage for A. Lantz as a police patrolman.

g. Resolution 626: Appointing and establishing a wage for B. Jones as a municipal court judge.

h. Resolution 627: Concurring with the Sanitary Board to pursue funding for Phase I of the sewer system Long-Term Control Project.

i. The following requests to use or close city streets for special events have been approved by the appropriate administrative officers per the city’s Events Protocol.

i. Davis Medical Center, to close Gorman Avenue, June 20.

ii. Chamber of Commerce, to close various streets downtown in case inclement weather prevents City Park from hosting Mountain State Street Machines, July 4-6. (Approval of fire and police chief pending.)

iii. Chamber of Commerce, to close various streets downtown for a 5K race, September 13.

iv. Chamber of Commerce, to close additional streets for community celebration, September 13.

 

City of Elkins Extended Fire Fee Area Proposal:

If approved on three readings, Ordinance 178 would extend the city’s fire-service fee

throughout the Elkins Fire Department’s “first-due area” (see map), NOT countywide. Rates

would be the same inside and outside the city. Income from the fee could only be used for the fire department.

· Flat rate of $100 per living unit for all owner-occupied homes and all other residential

structures with two or fewer living units. (E.g., a single-family house will be charged $100;

the landlord of a house split into two apartments would pay $100 per living unit; the

landlord of a house split into three apartments would pay the square footage rate, below,

just like today.)

· Square footage rate of $0.05 (the third step in the fire-fee increase imposed by council in

January 2012) for all other improved properties (rentals with three or more units in a

building, commercial, industrial, etc.).

Advantages of extending the fire fee outside Elkins city limits:

· Increased professional staffing

· Increased number of professionals on each shift

· Larger response to fires outside city limits

o Without extended fire fee: can only send 12 firefighters and two engines (2,000

gallons of water)

o With extended fire fee: Can send entire department (up to 28), all four engines, and

the aerial with 95-foot ladder (4,000 gallons of water)

· Increased budget for equipment, training, etc.

· Possibility of reduced insurance premiums outside city limits (check with your agent about

the advantage of an “improved ISO rating”)

Problems solved by extending the fire fee outside Elkins city limits:

· Decreasing number of volunteers

o Younger volunteers aren’t signing up

o Increasingly expensive and time-consuming for volunteers to meet expanding

certification requirements

· Stabilized funding

o Currently @ $100,000 of FD budget comes from volunteers, via both

state/county funding and volunteer fundraising

o State/county funding could be cut

o Fundraising might be less successful in some years

 

Less cigarette smoking, soda drinking and physical fighting, but more time at computers and other tech devices. That’s the snapshot from the new C-D-C National Youth Risk Behavior Survey. The government goal of reducing teen smoking nationally to less than 16 percent has been met, but C-D-C director Tom Frieden notes that it’s a fragile victory at 15-point-seven percent – and it comes with a rise in popularity of e-cigarettes.

 

"And no kid should be exposed to advertising that glorifies the use of nicotine or be able to easily buy e-cigarettes because their sales have not been restricted."

The West Virginia teen smoking rate is higher – nearly 20 percent. While most young people are spending fewer hours watching television, they’ve replaced most of that with time spent before a computer.

Stephanie Zaza is the director of the division of adolescent and school health at the C-D-C. She says while they have a lot of great data, they do not have the reasons why kids do the things they do. She finds it alarming that 41 percent of teen drivers admit to texting or e-mailing while driving, and urges parents to step in to stop any behavior that takes a teen's attention away from the road.

 

"Parents play an active role in keeping their teen drivers safe by close monitoring, frequent discussions, parent-teen driving agreements and acting as a role model of good driving habits."

The C-D-C reports that car crashes are the single biggest killer of teens and young adults, causing 23 percent of deaths among 10 to 24-year-olds.

 

The schedule of events for July is out for the Davis & Elkins college campus, the first week of the month includes:

July 2 – Music on the Veranda will take place from 5-7 p.m. Classical guitarist and Elkins native Kris Woodrum will perform while guests enjoy the most spectacular view in town from the Graceland veranda on the campus of Davis & Elkins College in Elkins. Half-price drink and hors d'oeuvre specials will be available. For more information, call 304-621-0661 or visit www.gracelandinn.com.

July 6-11 – Cajun / Creole Week at Augusta Heritage Center of Davis & Elkins College in Elkins offers a gala of nonstop music and dancing with informal jam sessions, public concerts and dances, and a mid-week party featuring Cajun cuisine. Classes are available in accordion, bass, fiddle, guitar and cooking, in addition to pottery, blacksmithing, instrument repair and chair making. For information and registration, visit augustaheritagecenter.org, email augusta@augustaheritagecenter.orgor call 304-637-1209.

July 6-11 – Early Country Music Week at Augusta Heritage Center of Davis & Elkins College in Elkins offers participants the opportunity to explore country music from its roots with some of the most dedicated instructors of today. Classes are available in songwriting, fiddle, vocal, and steel, acoustic and electric guitar. Evenings are filled with jam sessions, and public concerts and dances. For information and registration, visit augustaheritagecenter.org, email augusta@augustaheritagecenter.org or call 304-637-1209.

 

 

An unusual play production – on the river in downtown Charleston – is stirring the water and wants people to see. The New Brooklyn Theater company is staging an adaptation of Henrik Ibsen's "An Enemy of the People" on a stage built at a public dock. The century-old play is about a doctor who finds his town’s water has been polluted with a deadly chemical. The director, Jonathan Solari (so-LAR-ee), says they came to town specifically for debate and dialogue. He says they want to talk about what’s important for people here in a location central to those questions.

 

"In between where the Elk River feeds into the Kanawha and the state Capitol, depending on where your eyes as an audience member turn, we’re in the middle of everything."

The show runs the next two weekends at the public dock next to the Frontier building on MacCorkle Avenue – Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays starting at 7:30 p.m.

The Freedom Industries chemical spill stopped much of the state from being able to drink its tap water. The effects of that are still rippling though the legal and political systems. Solari says one of the great strengths of live theater has always been that it engages people in the political and social landscapes where they live. And in this case he says they can connect with people and the land and water itself.

 

 "If we can do anything to get more people to feel some kind of ownership of the land that we’re performing on, than we’ve succeeded a little bit."

He says they are actually using the river water in the production and making reference to the landmarks from the stage. That kind of staging actually has an old tradition. As far back as the ancient Greeks, theater was part of everyday life and politics, not separate from them. Solari says they want to break down that artificial divide – by taking the play into the community.

 

"At the most basic level, it’s easier to get people to the theater if we’re not in a theater."