Upshur County fire officials deal with mapping and addressing

Computer capabilities and contractual issues are preventing Upshur County’s local fire departments from obtaining a disk that contains the latest addressing and mapping information.

Upshur County commissioners said Thursday the county’s insurance carrier is wanting all of the fire departments to sign a “hold harmless” agreement that would protect the county from any liabilities that could result if any information contained on the disk is altered to suit the fire department’s needs.

Two versions of the computer program exist, said assistant county administrator Jennifer Dinkelo, one that cannot be changed and one that can. The fire departments are requested the program that can be changed so they can add any additional information they deem necessary.

The departments have also been hesitant in wanting to sign the agreement that commissioners say is required by their insurance company.

“They want to put in the additional information, and that’s fine,” Commissioner Donnie Tenney said. “But (the commissioners want it) that you can’t come back and sue the county commission because that information they put in may have been wrong. That’s why we need the ‘hold harmless’ clause.”

Dinkelo also said the information contained on the computer disk is so voluminous that most of the laptops used by the firefighters cannot store or process the program properly. She said a computer capable of handling the large program would cost “several thousand dollars.”

The county’s emergency dispatching center has the capability of running the program, commissioners said.

“I’m optimistic we can work through these issues,” Commissioner J.C. Raffety said.

In other matters, the commissioners reappointed Glenn Davis to the Upshur County Fire Board.

The commissioners announced the county had received a $2,000 Governor’s Community Participation Grant of $2,000 to purchase supplies and office equipment for the Upshur County Literacy Volunteers.

The commissioners also announced they will not meet Oct. 3 because of a state training meeting.