Newspaper Archive of
The Glenville Democrat
Glenville, West Virginia
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July 25, 1975     The Glenville Democrat
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July 25, 1975
 

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!iil !i 2 The Glenville Democrat/Pathfinder ~ ~ 107S e Rt. 5 is in terrible condition, bad enough to be a factor in causing fatal traffic accidents. And local Department of Highways officials remind us they do not have the manpower, equipment or funds to repair the heavily traveled highway. Why? Del. B. Burke, responding to a question asked at the Democratic Rally last week, said that road maintenance money is being spent to pay New York and Pennsylvania banks who bought bonds to finance 1-79. Interest on those bonds is eating into the road maintenance budget, he said. The debt service faced by the state is staggering, contrary to Gee. Arch A. Moore Jr.'s boast that "the state has money out of its hip pocket." A true picture of the fiscal condition of the state's treasury will not be forthcoming until the budgeting process becomes a unified system, with both governor and the legislature deriving cost and income figures from the same sources. During the past legislative session's budget and appropriations battle, an exact estimate of how much money could be allocated to the DOH maintenance budget could not be accurately determined. The governor claimed there was more money in the budget to be allocated than the legislature found they were capable of spending. The road maintenance budget for all 55 counties is $150 million. Last year, Gilmer County's share was $753,839.18, according to DOH Department of Public Information. This year's share is $1,141,817.45. Of that total, $689,117.45 is slated for routine maintenance. A special maintenance fund for re-surfacing amounts to $452.700. According to Everett Stoneking, DOH Supervisor in Gilmer County, pilings for several slips which have already been repaired cost approximately $60,000. When you add the cost of other materials, labor, transportation, equipment rental from private firms, it appears that the total sum allocated for the year is adequate only for routine road maintenance and not The pension eligibility of indicted former State Treasurer John H. Kelly and other officials convicted or found guilty of committing crimes in office has become a matter of increasing concern to legislators and taxpayers. The Gilmer County Farm Bureau Board of Directors decided at their July 10 meeting to endorse Col. Loren McCartney's resolution on a change in the state's retirement law to make it impossible for officials like Kelly to draw a pension. Kelly, you will remember. recently pleaded guilty to charges of mail fraud, extortion and bribery. He also entered a no-contest plea to a charge that he accepted a $1,000 bribe. Thirty-three additional counts against Kelly were dropped as a result of a plea bargaining agreement between Kelly and the prosecutor's office. However, two days before he pleaded guilty, Kelly resigned from his post, ostensibly to protect his annual $12,600 pension. It was assumed he would lose the pension only if convicted in office. But two state legislators, Dele- gates Larry Sonis and Jack Canfield recently cited a section of existing state law in a letter to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance {Del. Billy B. Burke and Sen. William F. Sharpe sit on this committee}. The statute contains provisions that: -Establish procedures for hand- ling pensions of state officials convicted of crimes in office or who by Iim lacobs indictment against him stems from a scheme between Kelly and state bankers to provide the treasurer with cash and expense-paid vacations in return for depositing state funds in non-interest bearing accounts in their banks. New State Treasurer Ronald G. Pearson said recently that the state was losing $10 million annually through failure to make proper investments. Thus, if the PERS board so desires, they may disallow Kelly's pension payments, according to Sonis and Canfield. McCartney and the Farm Bureau - area citizens and taxpayers who have courageously chosen to express their outrage-might now decide to revise their resolution. They might ask that the legislature enforce existing statutes that would prevent convicted felons from receiving state pensions. The Farm Bureau publishes resolutions made over the year in a county policy booklet which might later be incorporated in a state booklet. These booklets are then distributed to state legislators. The resolution serves, in this case, as an on-the-record statement, a protest, against rewarding public officials who abuse the public trust, especially those who have committed crimes while in office. Perhaps one small step towards restoring public trust at a time when voter apathy is at such as all-time high, would be for the PEgS board to cut off rewards to convicted state officials. "Both common sense and the law By U.S. Senator West Virginia and the Does West Virginia get too much federal money? Some national corre- spondents would have us believe that it does. They perpetuate the myth that the economy of our state depends heavily on federal facilities and federal pro- grams. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fiscal year 1974---the last year for which com- parative figures are avail- able--West Virginia ranked 41st among the states in the amount of federal funds it received. To be sure, that ranking repre- sents a dramatic increase from the 48th position West Virginia occupied in 1970; but it still serves to refute the charges that our state is getting more than its share of federal dollars. With 0.85 percent of the country's population, West Virginia, in fiscal year 1974, received 0.72 percent of the federal outlays----g1,098 on a per capita basis, com- pared with a national per capita average of $1,321. I serve on the Senate Appropriations Cccnmit tee and am Chairman of the Subcommittee on Interior Appropriations. T h r o u g h those assignments, I have been able to secure a num- ber of projects for our state--each one of which was fully justified before any funds were allocated. Gi/mer COHfy Those for Mine Academy, ucts and a source me, as I for all And I my federal grams they c~n to keeP acts fulb The outlaysk~ should and look st For too Virginia states of of the areS~ regarded federal at the pole. NOW, site for acts, and tJes--a far to fldent region creasing federal Virgin GSC pool open to community - Monday p.m.; Tuesday and Thursday nights, 7-8 p.m. Thursday, July 24 - Blood Pressure and clinic. County Health Dept., Mineral ltd., 3:30 p.m. Thursday, July 24 - Tennis - 8 p.m. Sat., San. - July 26-27 - Conntr'y Music Minnie's Farm and Park on Frametowa i~ each day. repairs, vacate their office because of indicate the board can act now, wi july zs. Aus. I - C] erleaders Gt er County is not the only entity in the state,misconduct, or without a cha ......... u_ffering from a poorly maintained road system it's .... Canf ld said. . : Weduulay, iu, 3O - Movie, . ........ -Give the,b0ardof rusteesfor the . Joaane Woodward. GSC auditorium. $ a statewide phenomenon. While millions are poured Public Employees Retirement System The recent history of West Assoc. $I.00 Public invite& 8:30 p.m. into 1-79, placing the state deep in debt, other Monday, Aug. 4 - Cd]mer County Cedar Creek State Park. 6:30 p.m. "final power to decide the question" in disputed areas. "People are fed up with the double standard in which convicted state officials continue to receive large paychecks the rest of their lives while many honest persons are forced to live on meagre pensions," Sonis said. The two legislators said the only payment the state is obliged to give convicted state officials, is a sum equal to their contribution to the retirement fund, plus interest. Kelly, if convicted, faces a maximum sentence of 35 years in prison and a fine of $22,000. The Virginia and many other states is a sordid chronicle of public officials on the take. Kelly's troubles constitute the most recent chapter. What really galls many Citizens and legislators is the fact that Kelly maintained his innocence for several weeks before he appeared in the courtroom. Even after he pleaded quilty and nolocontendere, he said in an interview with WSAZ-TV that he might consider running for public office in the future. Such arrogance of the law and of public trust only serves to further agitate the sensibilities of an already disgusted general public. GILMER COUNTY MEDICAL CENTER IS OPEN Junior Dresses Half Size Dre Junior Call 462-7381 for Appointment Monday through Friday 9 to 5 Dr. Thomas Gross is the Medical Center Doctor. He will be joined in practice by Dr. Thomas Heller on August 4. Laboratory and x-ray services are available. Also See Our Special Coats. Dresses - Now Weston Open Friduy Ample Poriing in 20W For dental appointments call 462-7343 primary and secondary roads throughout the state appear doomed to decay. Why? Some rather startling recommendations were made recently by the administrative law judge of the Postal Rate Commission concerning future postal rates. If followed, these recommendations could spell disaster for the United States Postal Service itsef and for freedom of the press as we know it. Among other things the judge proposes reducing the price of a first-class stamp from 10 cents to 8- z cents. Sounds fine from the consumer's point of view, doesn't it? Well, it's not. And the reason is that the judge wants to make up the loss in first-class revenues by inordinate increases in the costs of mailing magazines, newspapers, books and packages. Actually, his plan would wind up costing the consumer more -not less. And .what does his plan do to the USPS? It means a reduction of $900 million in first-class revenues, and the doubtful prospect that this will be made up by the certain reduction in usage of the other classes of mail. Not to mention the fact that there is already a $1.6 billion deficit facing the postaF service. Bankruptcy? Certainly a possibility. Moreover, the judge's proposals could also cause an intellectual bankruptcy in the land, for they could force many of our valued periodicals to gout of business - unable to absorb or pass along the hugh increases in mailing costs. Newspapers and magazines would be hit by a minimum of 121 per cent rise (weekly newspapers by as much as 250 per cent); books by 96 per cent, and packages by 67 per cent. The single greatest tragedy in all of this as far as the American public is concerned is that the public-service function of the postal service in the dissemination of information and educational material- as clearly recognized by our founding fathers - has not even been considered in the recommendations made by the law judge in this case. If his remarkable recommendations are followed, we may live to see the day when the thoughtful, provocative and beautiful magazine is relegated to the role of coffee table decor for the very rich - as opposed to an informational and educational natural resource for all to enjoy. Emergency service is available when the center is not open by calling 46Z-7381 Call 462-7306 ambulance service JiM JACOII8 ................................................. : EDITOR JOAN LAYI ............................... CIRCULATION MAIqAGER GREG NICHOUION ................................. fdUL.ES MANAGER