By Jean Braithwaite
KEYSER - Saying that every road in the county could use some type of cleanup, Doug Wolfe, of the Mineral County Community Corrections Program, is trying to accomplish this very feat.
Wolfe spoke recently to the members of the Mineral County Litter Control/Recycling Task Force and said he joined the Community Corrections Program as an employee this past October, and with the clients of that agency, "We have spent hours each week picking up litter."
Naming Routes 46, 220, 956, and others, Wolfe has supervised the litter collection. “The number of bags already filled with litter is at 148,” he said.
Part of this project taken on by the correction program is the weekly cleanup of the Ed Kelley Memorial, near the Keyser Post Office.
With a concern of the safety for the clients walking along busy roadways in the county to collect discarded trash, Wolfe said they now wear orange vests for visibility and are awaiting signs from the West Virginia Division of Highways garage to be placed at each end of the litter collection sites.
While collecting litter, Wolfe mentioned that an abundance of aluminum cans are gathered.
"We bag them separate to be recycled, and the proceeds will go toward helping a program," he said, naming examples as Toys for Tots and Christmas Angel Tree.
Wolfe brought a subject to the members of the task force concerning deer carcasses, and said, "We found many in the water along Route 220, and contacted the state road and the Department of Natural Resources, and they can't take them."
Jeff Slack, director of the Region 8 Solid Waste Authority, cautioned Wolfe, saying, "Don't touch the carcasses with bare hands," noting some type of hook is needed to remove what is left of harvested deer.
He also said the Tucker County Landfill could take the carcasses at the end of the business day.
Bill Nichols stated a program is available in Buckhannon where deer carcasses are mixed with sawdust for compost.
Wolfe mentioned another area of concern along old Route 220, across from where Polish Pines was located, calling it "an active dump."
"There is even a shower surround thrown down there," he said, citing contractors could be disposing materials in that area.
Wolfe pointed out the same could be true along Route 46, from Piedmont, where shingles have been dumped over the bank.
Slack said Mike Park, manager of the Pollution Prevention and Open Dumps (PPOD) for this district, could be contacted to handle the dumps. This program uses landfill fees to clean up illegal dumps.
Slack suggested a way to curb illegal dumping of trash could be by way of citations for offenders.
Commissioner Janice LaRue, heading up the task force, would like get the involvement of the three trained county litter control officers in the program.
She did give words of appreciation to the Community Corrections Program for what has been done in regard to litter pick up.
Tara Hockaday, director of the county corrections program, said of Wolfe, "He is doing an amazing job," adding that he has other responsibilities with the agency, including duties with home incarceration, a program formerly under the direction of the office of the Mineral County Sheriff's Department.
She said, "We could do a lot more if we had another officer," directing the request to LaRue, indicating the county commission could hire an additional person for the program.
Telling the Mineral County Community Corrections Program helps with the monthly regional jail bill, Hockaday remarked, "It helps clients transform their lives."
Litter Control Task Force hears about community corrections program
By Jean Braithwaite