Upshur County Courthouse
The Upshur County Courthouse / File photo by Katie Kuba

Upshur Courthouse, county facilities’ closures to follow WVDE School Alert System Saturday map

BUCKHANNON – The Upshur County Courthouse and other county facilities will only be open for essential business, following a vote during an emergency Upshur County Commission meeting Monday morning.

Commissioners held an emergency meeting at 10 a.m. Oct. 5 to vote on a new policy that would limit the courthouse and other properties to essential business only when the WVDE school map shows Upshur County as red. The school map refers to the West Virginia Department of Education’s School Alert System: Saturday Education Map that is released for the week at 5 p.m. each Saturday.

Upshur County is the sole red county on Saturday’s revised School Alert System map.

“If the school map at any time goes red, then the courthouse and courthouse properties, with the exception of the virtual school at Curry Library, will go to limited access,” Upshur County Commission president Terry Cutright said.

County Administrator Carrie Wallace said the courthouse will follow the WVDE school map that is released Saturdays at 5 p.m., with numbers from Thursday.

“Today’s vote is based on the revised WVDE map that was updated yesterday, Oct. 4, and lists Upshur as red,” Wallace said. “Moving forward, the operations of the courthouse will be based on Saturday’s WVDE map that is released at 5 p.m.”

Wallace said anyone who wishes to conduct business at the courthouse is encouraged to make an appointment in advance or utilize telephone or online services.

“I did speak with Judge Reger and he spoke with Judge Hall and they’re both fine with that policy,” Wallace said. “I’m noting that they’ll continue with their court schedule because that is essential business. Other than that, it will return to essential business only. At the front door, court security will ask anyone that comes in, why they’re there and which office they need to see and make arrangements for either an appointment or to be escorted there, or to do the business online via telephone or mail.”

Wallace said if a person wants to see the map they are using, click here.

Commissioner Kristie Tenney made the motion to approve the new policy and commissioner Sam Nolte seconded.

According to the WVDE website, a red county means there is “substantial community transmission.” It means there are 25 and above cases of infection per 100,000 or a greater than 8 percent positivity rate. The website states, “Suspend in-person instruction and begin remote learning the next school day. All school-related activities are suspended immediately.”

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