< P.O. Box 70, Woodsfield, OH  43793  <


Below are links to portions of this week's news articles. For the full story, pick up a  paper at your local newsstand or send $1 with your name/address to P.O. Box 70, Woodsfield, OH  43793.



<RUOK? Program Launched

Partnering to launch Monroe County’s Are You OK? program were from left Ruritan member Margaret Schumacher, Alice Piatt of the Monroe Senior Center, Jean Baldwin, Monroe County Council on Aging; Rick Hindman, director, AAA8; Ruth Payne, Monroe County Council on Aging; Ruritan member Terry Hickman; Sheriff Chuck Black; Jean Ackerman, Monroe County Council on Aging Treasurer; Francis ‘Sonny’ Block, Monroe County Council on Aging and Ruritan member Vernon Cline.

        Contacting an elderly people or homebound individual on a daily basis helps to reassure their well being and provides a feeling of security. The Area Agency on Aging 8 in partnership with The Monroe County Senior Center and County Council on Aging is pleased to announce a new service called the RUOK? (Are You OK?) program. This computerized telephone calling system is free and available to seniors aged 60 and over and to disabled adults.
        The system consists of a computer, telephone, printer and the RUOK software housed at the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office (provided through a grant from AAA8). The computer stores subscriber names, numbers and call times. The system automatically calls each person at a pre-determined time. When RUOK hears a voice response on the phone it delivers a short pre-recorded message. System operators monitor responses. If the RUOK subscriber does not answer after a pre-set number of call attempts, an alert is given with the emergency contact information and efforts are made to check on the subscriber’s welfare.
        The Are You OK? telephone reassurance system eases the concerns of friends and family who may find it difficult to maintain consistent, reliable contact. It also helps guarantee the independence of aging residents who live alone.
        “Every day at a pre-arranged time, RUOK automatically makes computerized monitoring calls inexpensively and without interruption to normal community services,” said AAA8 Director Rick Hindman. “RUOK is a great community service and we are pleased to help bring it to the residents of Monroe through key county partnerships.”
        The system is designed to check at-risk adults on a daily basis in collaboration with the sheriff’s office and Sheriff Black.
        The program is not designed to replace, but to supplement, emergency response systems. Funding support for the program’s telephone line was provided by Monroe County Council on Aging and Ruritan Club, as well as AT&T.
        For more information or to sign up, call the Senior Center at 740-472-1312.

<Bids Awarded for Eventual Move of Monroe County Court

by Arlean Selvy
        Executive sessions commanded most of the afternoon session of the Feb. 17 meeting of Monroe County commissioners, who also opened bids for renovation of rooms which will accommodate County Court. During the Feb. 23 meeting, bids were awarded.
        The County Court offices are being moved from the second  floor to the first floor. Space formerly used by the Soil and Water Conservation District will be converted to a courtroom; the first floor conference room will be renovated to house the Adult Probation office and space currently occupied by county commissioners will be restructured as an office for the clerk of County Court.
        Office space for the clerk of the Board of County Commis-sioners will move to the second floor County Court office and take over the adjoining office currently occupied by adult probation officers. Com-missioners will hold weekly meetings in what is now the County Court courtroom.
        Four general contractor bids for the reconstruction work were received and five other companies bid for mechanical and electrical work.
        Bidding for the general contract were Combs Construction, Beverly, $79,243.46; Grae-Con Construction, Marietta, $69,800; Pryor Construction, Weirton, $62,600 and Swiss Valley Associates, Sardis, $65,710. Of the four, Comb bid $60,844 for HVAC and $25,146 for electrical; Swiss Valley bid $57,325 for HVAC and $29,216 for electrical.
        Bidding under Mechanical: Bee Electric, New Martinsville, HVAC, $49,848; Brian’s Refrig-eration, Antioch, HVAC, $53,196.50, electrical $21,981; Morrison Inc. Marietta, HVAC $52,648.
        Under Electrical: Ables Elec-tric, Cambridge, HVAC, $55,951 and electrical $24,255; Force Electric, Waterford, electrical, $25,200; Pioneer Pipe, Marietta, electrical, $21,560.
        Dave Haught, of Lee and Haught Architects, Marietta, reviewed the bids and returned this week with his recommendation, which were approved by commissioners. Awarded the general contract was Pryor Construction; for mechanical, Bee Electric; for electrical, Pioneer Pipe. Haught will now prepare contracts and obtain building permits from the state.
        Ronda Piatt, dog warden, asked about getting a credit card to be used by persons transporting dogs for adoption by agencies in neighboring areas and states. She feels this to be a better way to maintain a paper trail.
        Piatt reported St. Sylvester students have been collecting change for the dog pound. The donations are earmarked for the transportation program.
        In a related matter, Piatt said she will hold another Treasure Hunt this year to raise money for gasoline. It was noted that time spent on this fundraising project is her personal time and 100 percent of the money will go for the transportation program.
        At the request of Jeanette Harter, director, Job and Family Services, officials entered into executive session at 2:45 p.m. for matters of confidentiality. Included in the session with Commissioners John Pyles, Tim Price and Carl Davis were Harter and Bill Long, JFS workforce supervisor. That session ended at 3:30 p.m. at which time Long left the office. A second session started immediately and, according to officials, was requested by Harter to discuss personnel with regard to disciplinary action. The session ended at 4:25 p.m.
        Officials took no formal action following the sessions.
        In another matter, Harter explained amendments to contracts between JFS and GMN Tri-County CAC. Amendment. Three contracts were reduced in spending amounts and one was increased by the amounts reduced  in each of the others.
        Programs reduced in spending were: Project Partnership,

<Public Safety Top Priority

by Holly Gallagher
Staff Writer
        Power outages, tree removal, early warning systems, and the changeover to digital television were some of the topics discussed at the Feb. 17 meeting of Woodsfield Village Council.
        Village Administrator Jeff Woodell thanked employees and volunteers who helped with damage repair and clean-up after the Feb. 11 windstorm.  He estimated damages cost the village $40,000.                             Public safety is a top priority for Woodell. He presented a proposal to council for an early warning system to alert residents in times of emergencies.
        Proposed is a system similar to that of the Switzerland of Ohio Local School District which places automated telephone calls  in cases of emergencies and reminds students of certain scheduled events.
        “How do we notify residents?” asked Woodell.
        His plan would warn residents of situations such as boil orders, scheduled power outages, and street sweeping.  Information concerning the television cable system could also be passed along to customers.     He said Police Chief Chuck Hamilton suggested an alert system could also be beneficial in locating missing children. Woodell spoke with a representative of the school district and was told the program cost is based on usage. The school district pays about $450 per month and, according to Woodell, the village would more than likely not have to utilize the system as much as the school district, therefore reducing the village’s cost.
        Councilman Bill  Moore said that he endorsed at least ‘exploring the cost’ of such a warning system. A motion was unanimously passed to begin exploring the possibility of an alert system.
        Woodell told council that in his 14 months as village administrator,  there have been at least  three lengthy power outages near Westwood Landing and Woodsfield Nursing and  Rehabilitation Center. These outages have all been the result of tree interference; either falling onto lines, transformers, or knocking down a pole.
        Woodell has located a company willing to remove the trees and pay $3 a ton to the city. Woodell asked for permission to contact the company and have the trees removed. The well-being of citizens residing in both facilities is the main cause for concern.
        Councilwoman Carol Hehr expressed her views regarding the tree removal, saying, “I would like for you to compare the cost of burying lines to cutting down trees.” She noted, “You cannot cut down every tree.”
        After some discussion, a motion was made and unanimously passed to have the trees removed.
        Woodell and Moore commented on the television changeover from analog to digital and commended the cable company for such a smooth transition. “The digital changeover was a success,” said Woodell. 
        In other news, Councilman Dale English asked members to explore the idea of changing the signs in front of the Municipal Building. English said he would like to see “Village Administrator Jeff Woodell” on the sign as well. Mayor Bill Bolon indicated council will looked into the matter.
        The meeting adjourned into executive session for the purpose of personnel and land acquisition. No action was taken after the session was concluded.

<~ Beacon Wins Community Service Award, Delphos Herald President Honored ~
        Monroe County Beacon won second place in the Community Service category of this year's Osman C. Hooper Newspaper Show sponsored by the Ohio Newspaper Association, which also presented the prestigious President’s Award to Delphos Herald Inc. President Murray Cohen.

The Community Service Award was accepted by Beacon Publisher Arlean Selvy at the ONA annual conference held Feb 11-13 in Columbus. Of the Beacon's Warm the Children project, judges wrote "a notable achievement through promotion and editorial coverage." The Beacon, in 2007, won the second place award in the ONA Hooper Competition Local Features category. Judges for the Hooper Newspaper competition select winners in 13 classes for General Excellence Awards in five circulation categories. 






Murray  Cohen displays the plaque presented by ONA President Ken Douthit, president of Douthit Communications in Sandusky. Cohen was honored for his many years of dedication to and promotion of the
 Ohio Newspaper Association. Cohen served on the ONA Board of Directors for seven years. Delphos Herald Inc. encompasses more than a dozen newspapers in Ohio, Tennessee, Indiana, Kentucky,  Illinois and Wisconsin as well as a newspaper printing plant, Eagle Print, located in Delphos. The Paulding Progress, Paulding, Ohio, owned by Cohen, earned three awards for feature writing. The Paulding publisher is Doug Nutter.

< Obituaries

        Martha E. LaCava, 89, Rus-sell Ave., New Martins-ville, formerly of Sardis, died Feb. 17, 2009, at New Martins-ville Health Care Center. She was born Nov. 20, 1919 in Sardis, the daughter of the late George and Edna Straub Geokler. Sympathy expressions at grisellfuneralhomes.com.

        Matthew Allan Christman, 36, Woodsfield, died Feb. 18, 2009. He was born March 18, 1972 in Barnesville, a son of Charles and Rosalie Thomas Christman of Woodsfield. Condolences can be expressed at www.bauerturner.com.

<Our Readers Write:

Dear Editor,
        Marines, dependents, naval personnel and civilians who lived and worked aboard U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp LeJeune in North Carolina between 1957 and 1987 may have been exposed to highly contaminated water. Many of the chemicals present in the water are known to cause various cancers and birth defects as well as other serious illnesses.
        The U.S.M.C. is asking everyone who was at Camp LeJeune this time frame (with or without any health issues) to register on their website at www.marines.mil for the Camp Lejeune Water Study.
        If you would like to find out more information on the Camp LeJeune water contamination, please visit the website of The Few, The Proud, The Forgotten at www.tftptf.com. TFTPTF has an illness registry, historical documents library, photo gallery and discussion board on the site.
Andrea Byron

<Around the Burnside

    The wise look ahead to see what’s coming, but fools deceive themselves.
        Each heart knows its bitterness, and no one else can fully share its joy.
        Well, guess what? I received my stimulus check. Not really. It was just a refund check from the state income tax. I was surprised it came so soon after I had mailed in my return. OK, it was my money in the first place. It still seemed like getting money from home without asking for it. Better than having to pay more. Much better than the states that are sending IOU’s for tax returns.
        The week that includes George Washington’s birthday is National FFA week. I remember the Swiss Hills Chapter, when it was active, made a big deal during the week with a number of activities which include cherry pie for all faculty and FFA members and a quiz for all students.
        I happened to be looking through some old Around the Burnside; I save them all. When I came across one I had written some time ago. It was one when Around the Burnside was printed in the Sentinel, along with my picture, and I failed to date it. I thought it interesting so I am including it today as an example of what could be, and how it was.
        “Swiss Hills FFA strikes again. The FFA team representing Ohio at the Eastern Exposition held in Springfield, Mass., on Sept. 12, won first place in the Agricultural Mechanics skills contests. Two of the three members are students in the Farm Management program at Swiss Hills. As a result of their high finish in the state contest last spring, Mike Kehl and Dan Brown were selected to represent the state at the Big “E” exposition and Gary Cook, Junior Farm Management Instructor, was chosen coach of the team. When the score was added up, Mike Kehl was the top individual, Dan Brown was in fourth place and the third team member from Marion County was the third place individual. These scores added up to a two hundred point lead over the second place team. This win coupled with a win by the Union Local Dairy team resulted in Ohio receiving the sweepstakes award for finishing the highest when all contests are considered. The Big “E” is a national
 contest for the Eastern states.
        We get all excited when a basketball team makes it to the district tournament and all they have to do is beat two teams. Compare this to the Swiss Hills record of five trips to a national contest since 1976. The results of the trips? One first, two seconds, a third and a seventh. If this isn’t a reason to stick out your chest and brag, I don’t know what is. No chapter in the state can match this record. Who said we don’t have anything to brag about?”
        Is it any wonder you feel sad when something you helped start has appeared to have died?
        When you turn on the TV set, it isn’t long until an advertisement comes on the screen wanting you to buy some kind of a cure for an any thing medicine. This isn’t new. In the same article as above I also wrote the following:
        “How about Hadacol? I bet some of you even took this medicine. As I recall the advertising Hadacol was a cure for just about everything from cold sores to the bellyache. I wonder how many gallons of the stuff was sold. I know whoever held the patent on it made a mint. I wish I could remember some of the jokes about Hadacol. They were going around about like W.Va. jokes today. Dad tried Hadacol for a time and said, ‘This is the best medicine ever made.’ Why wouldn’t it be? It contained 19 percent alcohol. This is higher proof than some wine.”
        On a more serious note, it seems as though we get over one and another is just around the corner. I’m talking about elections. The May election will be rolling around before we know it.
        As I see it, our school district has an important vote coming up. Agree or disagree, to me it boils down to a very few simple words, “to have or what ever, who knows?”
        The plan appears to have everything every area of the county has asked for. All voters know this plan costs money. With the economy the way it is this makes it tough to decide how to vote. The state has come through and offered to pay nearly two thirds of the cost of the plan on a one time deal.
        We have some outstanding young people in our county. For example, the River cheerleaders, the River football tam, Monroe Central cheerleaders, Beallsville and Monroe Central girls teams all represent our county and school district as outstanding young men and women. These are the ones we hear about. We hear very little about what some of our other students are accomplishing. Somehow we should know more about these students and what is happening in our schools to make us realize we have a large number of outstanding students in our system. All they need is a chance and decent facilities. End of story.
        A certain amount of opposition is a help, not a hindrance. Kites rise against the wind, not with it.
      Bible readings: (Mon.) Psalm 2:4-11; (Tues.) John 10:11-18; From the Psalms (Wed.) 21:1-7; (Thurs.) 45:1-7; (Fri.) 72:1-7; (Sat.) 110; (Sun.) Ezekiel 34:23-31.