Greenbrier Commission proclaims April ‘Child Abuse Prevention Month,’ approves $278k for Quinwood broadband project

By Matthew Young, RealWV

LEWISBURG, W.Va. – The Greenbrier County Commission, on Tuesday, heard a presentation from the Greenbrier Humane Society, which included their annual report. On-hand to deliver the presentation was Humane Society Volunteer Board President Jen Runyon. 

“2023 was a rough ride,” Runyon began. “We had 771 dogs surrendered, and 1,075 cats were surrendered by Greenbrier County citizens. Pre-COVID, dog surrenders were down to 500. We estimate that we will end 2024 with over 900 dog surrenders. Cats have remained fairly static.”

According to Runyon, a large percentage of animals were surrendered by their owners. In addition, the Humane Society also provided care for 90 animals brought in by County Animal Control.

“Total animals in our care in 2023 were 1,936,” Runyon said, adding that between 2009 and 2023, the Humane Society has provided care for 26,126 animals. 

“That’s almost close to our population of the whole county,” Runyon added.

Each year, Runyon said, the Humane Society “puts over $100,000 back into the community” by paying local veterinarians to spay and neuter the owned pet population, noting, “We’ve fixed over 20,000 dogs and cats.”

Food and medical expenses increased more than $60,000 from 2022 to 2023, Tunyan added. 

Moving on to new business, commissioners approved a proclamation recognizing April as “Child Abuse Prevention Month,” and announced the Children’s Memorial Flag Day ceremony. 

“Children are key to the state’s future, success, prosperity, and quality of life,” the proclamation states. “Our children are the most valuable resource, and they are also the most vulnerable.”

The Children’s Memorial Flag Day ceremony will take place on Friday, April 26. The ceremony will take place in front of the Greenbrier County Courthouse on Court Street, beginning at noon. The public is invited. 

In other business, commissioners accepted a petition for the annexation of two parcels of land on Riverview Avenue into the Town of Alderson, approved the hiring of a program assistant at the County 4-H Extension Office, and adopted motions for the purchase of two separate conservation easements. The two easements totalled $278,238.

Next before the commission was the consideration of a draw request for the Greenbrier County Quinwood-area Broadband project, in the amount of $31,454.77. The draw is to satisfy invoices from Thompson and Litton Engineering, and the Region 4 Planning and Development Council for work performed on the project. 

“The invoices that have been received are [from Thomas and Litton] for planning and technical services,” Commission President Tammy Tincher said. “As well as the Region 4 Planning and Development Council, which manages all of the administration for these grant projects.”

The project is being funded through the Small Cities Block Grant received by Greenbrier County, for a total amount of $668,227. With no further questions or discussion, commissioners approved the draw. 

The final item on the day’s agenda was the awarding of bids for the Abandoned and Dilapidated Structures project. However, the item was removed from the agenda as further information pertaining to the specific structures is required. 

The next scheduled meeting of the Greenbrier County Commission is Tuesday, May 7, at 10 a.m. 

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