Commission discusses farming conditions

By Erin (Perkins) Johnson -

POINT PLEASANT — The Mason County Commission met on Thursday afternoon discussing the abnormally dry conditions for area farmers this year.

The commissioners in attendance were President Rick Handley, Sam Nibert and Tracy Doolittle along with County Clerk Diana Cromley and County Administrator John Gerlach.

Nibert shared his concern with his fellow commissioners regarding the dry weather conditions for area livestock farmers. According to the USDA, 33 percent of the topsoil in southern West Virginia was rated short to very short in moisture.

Nibert has been in contact with State Senator Eric Tarr who has contacted the Commissioner of Agriculture Kent Leonhardt about the conditions in Mason County.

“Being out of water, out of grass is very critical to our livestock producers going into the fall,” said Nibert. “The forecast for the next 30 days is not favorable for rain, which could enhance these conditions.”

The commission is asking livestock producers who may need help to contact the Mason County Farm Service Agency at 304-675-2020 or the Mason County Commission at 304-675-1110.

“The commission will work with our state leaders to seek a declaration if the need continues,” said Nibert.

Nibert recommended producers keep records on their hay, grain and any other expenses, so in case declaration is granted, they will have record of need for financial aid.

In other business, the commission approved the proclamation stating Oct. 1 as Breast Cancer Awareness Day and the entire month of October as Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

The proclamation stated, “In 2019, an estimated 1,470 West Virginia women will be diagnosed with breast cancer and approximately 290 women will die from the disease. Breast cancer continues to be a leading cause of cancer related deaths among West Virginia women. A woman has about a one in eight (12 percent) chance of developing breast cancer in her lifetime and about a 1 in 38 (2.6 percent) chance of dying from the disease. Currently, the best method to reduce deaths due to breast cancer is through early detection of the disease.Women age 50 and older should have a mammogram every year. Women ages 40-49 should talk with their healthcare provider about their screening schedule. Clinical breast exams by a physician or nurse are recommended every three years for women in their 20’s and 30’s. Clinical breast exams, breast self-exam and mammograms save lives.”

The Mason County CEOS annual wreath hanging ceremony in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Day will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 1 at 11 a.m. at the Mason County Library and the annual Breast Cancer Awareness Walk will be take place on Saturday, Oct. 19 at Krodel Park. Registration will be held at 10 a.m. and the walk will begin at 11 a.m.

Mason County EMS Director Dennis Zimmerman introduced his new EMT class to the commission. This class is sponsored by the Workforce Investment Board and 11 students are enrolled. The investment to this class is approximately $5,000 per student, total being $55,000 to Mason County.

By Erin (Perkins) Johnson

Erin (Perkins) Johnson is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing. Reach her at (304) 675-1333, extension 1992.

Erin (Perkins) Johnson is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing. Reach her at (304) 675-1333, extension 1992.