Car show funding request denied

BUCKHANNON – As a result of budget cuts, and to be fair to other organizations that have asked for funds, the Upshur County Commission turned down a request Thursday to donate money toward the Blast from the Past Car Show set for next weekend.

The car show has become an annual event for the West Virginia Classic Wheels Car Club in Buckhannon, but Commission President J.C. Raffety said, because of about $400,000 in budget cuts for this fiscal year, the Commission has had to curtail donations to what he has referred to as “quality of life programs.”

The club had requested $1,000 for the event, scheduled from 5-10 p.m. July 25 and 8 a.m.-11 p.m. July 26.

“I think the only thing we need to consider is we’ve reduced our contributions to everybody this year significantly,” Commissioner Donnie Tenney said.

Commissioners took the request under advisement, but did not vote on the matter. When Raffety called for a motion, no one provided one.

“We have not been able to fund some of the organizations we have funded in the past,” Commissioner Troy Brady said. “I don’t think we should treat anybody any different than we’ve treated anybody else out there.”

Brady said the Commission has had to turn down some good organizations.

“Certainly, we appreciate what you do, buying car seats and stuff like that,” Brady said.

The proceeds from the car show are donated by the club to local charities, one of which is the purchase of car seats for mothers in need. Commissioners said if it would help the club, they would be happy to donate pool passes to the Upshur County Pool, which they have done for other organizations they could not help monetarily.

“We must treat organizations equally to the degree that we can,” Raffety said.

Commissioner Donnie Tenney said the Commission has cut funding to a public library, a youth camp and other organizations.

The Blast from the Past Car Show brings to life the 1950s and 1960s. In conjunction with Festival Fridays on July 25, there will be a classic car cruise-in as well as live music and entertainment at Jawbone Park.

The club will serve pancake breakfasts for $5 a person from 8-10 a.m. July 26 at CJ Maggies on Main Street, followed by the classic cars “Rod Run” to the West Virginia State Wildlife Center in French Creek for a barbeque from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Later that evening, from 6 p.m. – 11 p.m., Main Street in Buckhannon will close for a Block Party and classic car street show featuring live music by The Fabulous Rockolas.

In other news, the County Commission announced it will not meet July 17, but will resume regularly scheduled meetings starting July 24.