(02/18/2010)

Chuck Holmes, Calhoun's new highway administrator
since November, says DOH workers get the credit

By Bob Weaver

"It has been pretty much around the clock since before Christmas," said Chuck Holmes, Calhoun's new Highway Administrator, commenting on the worst winter season since 1995-96.

"It's been a real challenge for our workers, most are working double shifts," he said.

"Our employees do the real hard work. They're dependable and tireless," Holmes said, noting there are only 28 DOH employees in the county.

Looking out the window of the Mt. Zion garage, he said, "You know it's snowed nine inches in the past two days."

While much of the blizzard snow has melted, there is 15 inches of snow and mounting in areas of the county.

County residents have praised the local department for their tireless efforts to stay ahead of what seems to be an endless onslaught of snow, including a major blizzard.

Locals who travel regularly out of the county, said the local department is on the ball.

"Of course it's hard to get to every back road quickly," Holmes said, indicating a primary focus on the major primary and secondary roads.

As the sun sets on Mt. Zion Ridge, Holmes says
the weather forecast says more of the same ...

Calhoun has nearly 600 miles of roads on the map.

Holmes returned to Calhoun from Maryland with his family in 2006. They live in the Broomstick area. He had previously worked for the Maryland highway department.

The Holmes family is native to Calhoun, his parents, Charles and Mavarine Goodnight Holmes lived for many years on Leading Creek. His grandfather was Hale Goodnight.

West Virginia has already burned through more than 46 million dollars of its 54 million dollar snow removal budget with a snow season that runs to the end of March.

Holmes says there is still plenty of snow removal salt in the Calhoun shed.

Observing the setting sun and snow flakes falling, he said, "It sure would be nice to have a change of pace."


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