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County Commission Receives Valley Park, Day Report Updates

The Thursday, August 11, Putnam County Commission meeting could be termed as routine business. The routine can be interesting and informative.

The meeting agenda included updates on the Putnam County Homecoming and financial updates from Parks & Recreation and from Day Report. The financial updates provide both a look at the workings of the two entities and an explanation of their operation.

Parks & Recreation Director Justin Williams informed the commissioners that Parks indebtedness was reduced from $452,000 to $314,000 during the last year. The indebtedness of Parks stems from a line of credit and expenses associated with the Commons building and the water slide.

Williams said that revenue from increased Conference Center bookings allowed the water slide loan to be retired. The two remaining loans are variable rate with 7-year and 9-year terms. Loan payment is largely dependent upon Conference Center and athletic field bookings. Williams reported that Wave pool revenue was diminished by rainy weather but should be sufficient to break even.

Wave pool operation is dependent upon life guard availability. Williams said that Parks employed close to 60 life guards this summer. The start up of schools has necessitated the closing of the pool on Monday through Thursdays. The wave pool will remain open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through the Labor Day holiday.

Williams reported that the barn at the park entrance was available for rental.

Williams stated that the current parking arrangement is inadequate and more parking space is needed for wave pool users. He informed the commissioners that removal of green space islands would allow for 50 more spaces. Williams said that his priorities for the coming year are loan reduction and increased parking.

Day Report Director Jamey Hunt told the commission that his agency’s case load has increased dramatically since January, going from 60 to 77. Day Report reduces the need of the county to use the Regional Jail in Barboursville.

Hunt stated that his staff was at full strength and prepared to handle the increased number. Hunt reported that Day Report has been able to increase in-house services by employing a contract counselor. Hunt said after-hour counseling needs of individuals employed 8-4 can be met in-house.

Hunt said that Day Care has provide litter pick up as a community service. He stated that there were two pick ups in both Poca and Buffalo and three or four in Hurricane. Hunt reported that Day Care performed litter removal before, during, and after this year’s Putnam County Fair.

The commission granted Winfield Mayor Randy Barrett’s request to provide funding for portable restrooms and power cords for Putnam County Homecoming activities on September 10 and 11. Barrett said that festivities would begin at 2 p.m. on Saturday and conclude at 4:15 p.m. on Sunday. A full schedule of events can be found @ putnamcountyhomecoming.com.

The next county commission meeting will be Tuesday, August 30th at 5:30pm.

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