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Commissioners OK clean-up program

The Inter-Mountain photos by Brad Johnson From left, Randolph County Commissioners Mark Scott, David Kesling and Chris See listen to information about the Human Resource Development Foundation’s stream clean-up program Thursday.

ELKINS — The Randolph County Commission voted unanimously Thursday to take part in a program aiming to clean up damage from last year’s destructive flooding in the Harman area.

The Human Resource Development Foundation’s stream clean-up program focuses on removing blockages and debris from local streams and rivers. The program is offered to the county free, with no charge for any of the work done.

“We do the gruntwork that the (state Division of Highways) won’t do, or doesn’t have time to do,” program coordinator Debbie Anderson said during Thursday’s meeting.

“This is such a good program. It helps so many people and it helps the economy,” Anderson said. “It’s just a good hand for everybody.”

The Commissioners voted unanimously to approve a memorandum of understanding with Human Resource Development.

Anderson

“I know (the residents of Harman) will appreciate you,” Commission President David Kesling said.

“As you know … there is still a lot of debris in those streams,” Commissioner Mark Scott said. “If we had another flood at this time, it could cause substantial damage.”

The massive flooding took place in the Harman area on June 20, 2019.

Anderson said she will attend commission meetings periodically and provide progress updates.

She also asked commissioners for contact information for local state and county officials, which commissioners agreed to provide.

The HRDF, based out of Morgantown, has been cleaning up streams for six years and have worked in areas surrounding Randolph County in the past.

With the help of the Division of Highways, the Office of Emergency Management and the commissioners, Anderson hopes to compile a list of problem areas within the county.

The Severe Storm Clean Up hires out-of-work individuals through WorkForce West Virginia to clear blockages from tributaries which, in turn, cause more flooding.

Anderson stated that the program is self-sufficient and provides insurance, licenses, tools and personal protective equipment to the employees.

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