A pigeon cruises through the air high above the Upshur County Courthouse dome.

Courthouse dome cleaning and pigeon prevention project likely to begin in three weeks

BUCKHANNON – The Upshur County Commission is ready to put an end to the plight of pigeons plaguing the Upshur County Courthouse dome.

Commissioners on Thursday approved a bid from Buckhannon-based TKS Contracting in the amount of $45,000; those funds will pay for the cleaning of the Upshur County Courthouse dome and the installation of pigeon-deterring spikes.

A group of pigeons who regularly perch on the dome – simply look skyward when you’re walking between the courthouse annex and main courthouse on Main Street – have taken up residence on the dome, soiling it with their excrement, which can eventually eat away at the dome, commissioners said.

Commission president Sam Nolte said the spikes won’t kill the pigeons – they’ll simply dissuade them from returning.

“We’re putting the spikes in because once we clean the dome, we’re trying to prevent them from coming back,” Nolte said. “That’s why we had to put in the price for [additional spikes] more because down the road because more than likely, they’re going to try to find other ledges, and we may have to continue.”

While the commission is directing the contractor to install 1,200 linear feet of NIXILATE Model S four-foot pigeon spikes, it also asked for on price tag on installing an additional 500 feet of spikes in the future.

“We requested that they provide us with how much it would cost per foot in excess of the 1,200 for the additional 500,” assistant county administrator Tabatha Perry explained.

That amount turned out to be $32 per foot.

So, why order extra spikes?

The commission worries the pigeons could find a home nearby.

“Right now, they don’t seem to be hanging on the annex building, but my worry is, once we do the dome, they’re going to go some place,” Nolte said.

Perry reminded commissioners they’d opened three bids for the courthouse dome cleaning and spike installation project at their Feb. 14 meeting, but all three bids had been lacking information.

“Greg Harris (director of the county maintenance department) advised to contact Steeplejacks and see if they could provide us with their contractor’s license, and they do not have a contractor’s license in the state of West Virginia,” Perry told commissioners at the outset of the meeting. “They work out of Ohio, which does not require a contractor’s license.”

Perry said according to the Contractor’s Licensing Act in West Virginia, any project totaling more than $2,500 must be completed by a contractor with a contractor’s license.

She said the next lowest bid was submitted by TKS.

“They have provided everything required,” Perry said.

Perry said the difference in price between TKS Contracting and Steeplejack was $6,000.

Commissioner Terry Cutright made a motion to award the project to TKS Contracting, which was seconded by commissioner Kristie Tenney before passing unanimously.

The project is expected to begin in about three weeks, Perry said.

“That’ll be nice to get that started,” Nolte said.

Tenney said the county has opted to invest in the project now so they wouldn’t have to spend more money later.

Completely redoing the dome of the courthouse would cost at least $173,000 compared to the $45,000 the county is spending to clean the dome and have the spikes installed.

Nolte noted the county isn’t alone in dealing with a pigeon problem.

“It’s not just Upshur County. Some people have asked us about the spikes,” Nolte said.

Cutright said Lewis County commissioners had consulted him about it the previous day.

Before adjourning, the commission also:
-Approved and signed a Federal Aviation Administration request in the amount of $64,265 to fund the airport improvement program project at the Upshur County Regional Airport.

“I’d like to point out that this is for a grant that the airport’s running through the county, so it is grant-funded,” Cutright said.

-Learned applications for the state Court Security Fund program are due April 3.

The regularly scheduled commission meeting on Thursday, Feb. 28 has been canceled, with the next meeting slated to take place at 9 a.m. March 7 in the Upshur County Courthouse Annex.

Featured

SHOPS & SERVICES

Police Crime

Florida woman arrested for allegedly threatening to shoot people in Buckhannon Pizza Hut

BUCKHANNON – A Florida woman was arrested for allegedly threatening people at the Buckhannon Pizza Hut. Deanna D. Gandee, 49, of Naples, Florida was arrested for making threats of terroristic acts, a felony. According to the criminal complaint in the […]

Become a premium member to unlock immediate access to this story for our LOWEST PRICE EVER. Signing up is easy — just tap the button below!

Rotary Club of Buckhannon-Upshur receives update on polio eradication progress

BUCKHANNON – The Rotary Club has contributed more than $2.1 billion to help eradicate polio. Marty Kelley gave an update to the Rotary Club of Buckhannon-Upshur Nov. 15 about Rotary and its efforts to eliminate polio. “I thought I knew […]

Become a premium member to unlock immediate access to this story for our LOWEST PRICE EVER. Signing up is easy — just tap the button below!

SHOPS & SERVICES

Three Lady Bucs earn Big 10 All-Conference postseason volleyball honors

TENNERTON – Three Buckhannon-Upshur Lady Bucs were honored on the recently announced Big 10 All-Conference Volleyball team. Senior Kendal Currence earned First Team honors while sophomore Alyssa Abel and senior Tori Perkins were named to the Second Team. The Lady […]

Become a premium member to unlock immediate access to this story for our LOWEST PRICE EVER. Signing up is easy — just tap the button below!

Upshur County Sports Calendar

MONDAY (Nov. 28) TUESDAY (Nov. 29) Basketball WEDNESDAY (Nov. 30) Basketball Swimming THURSDAY (Dec. 1) Basketball FRIDAY (Dec. 2) Basketball SATURDAY (Dec. 3) Basketball Swimming Wrestling SUNDAY (Dec. 4)

WVWC Volleyball

Volleyball Lady ‘Cats get shutout of MEC postseason honors

BRIDGEPORT, W.Va. – The Mountain East Conference announced its 2022 volleyball all-conference teams and major award winners. Wheeling setter Karly Niesen was voted the Mountain East Conference Player of the Year in 2022, while West Liberty

SHOPS & SERVICES