CCAWV’s Basic Training for Veteran and Newly Elected Commissioners was held November 19-21 in Bridgeport, WV. The three day event provides comprehensive training for newly elected Commissioners and serves a a “refresher” course for those who have been in office for some time. In addition, it offers an opportunity for Commissioners from across the state to connect and exchange ideas. With well over sixty attendees, the conference was quite a success! Attendees received a copy of CCAWV’s Commissioners’ Handbook, which is a valuable resource for Commissioners veteran and new! The program coved a wide range of topics.

Ron Watson of the Harrison County Commission was on hand to welcome everyone to Harrison County. Greg Bailey of Bowles Rice LLP covered ethics and the Sunshine Law. Former Commissioner John Sorrenti led a session on how to conduct an effective meeting. Commissioners were introduced to NACo by former CCAWV President and NACo Board Member, Tim McCormick.


A packed agenda awaited Commissioners for the second day. Ora Ash, from the WV State Auditor’s office, provided an overview of county finances. Veteran County Administrator, Willie Parker, spoke about the Uniform Budget Process. After lunch, Duane Ruggier, III of Pullin, Fowler, Flanagan, Brown and Poe PLLC, went over the complexities of personnel issues. Bryan Brown of Brown Communications gave attendees tips on working with the media. Steve Rawlings of WVCoRP wrapped up the day’s agenda by discussing risk management.

After a night to absorb all that information, Commissioners were back at it early on Friday morning. Stephen Sluss, Attorney at Law explained the Board of Equalization and Review. Dave Barton of Shenandoah Valley Group tackled the complicated topic of insurance as it relates to counties. After lunch, the meeting wrapped up with a great, interactive panel comprised of other elected officials. Ernie Dennison, Nicholas County Assessor, explained the role of Assessors in the courthouse. Wyoming County Circuit Clerk David “Buggs” Stover spoke about the responsibilities of the Circuit Clerk. Jean Butcher, the Gilmer County Clerk, explained the Clerk’s role. The job of the Prosecuting Attorney was broken down by Taylor County Prosecutor, John Board. Tom McComas, Cabell County Sheriff, rounded out the panel. The elected officials did a great job of clarifying not only what they do, but how each of their roles intertwine. Elected officials rely on each other to keep the courthouse running smoothly!

We’d like to thank everyone who attended Basic Training! We’d especially like to thank the speakers, presenters and the elected officials who took time out of their busy schedules to make the trip to Bridgeport. We have a great group of newly elected Commissioners! We look forward to working with all of you!

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