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2012: An Eventful Year in Monroe County
Written by Staff   
Wednesday, January 09, 2013 7:59 PM

Monroe County had a busy and interesting year in 2012. Between the oil and gas boom and the construction of new schools, it was a more newsworthy year than most.

Following is a summary of the first half of 2012. Paragraphs are taken directly out of the original articles written by Beacon staff.  Look in next week’s Beacon for the second-half summary.

 

January

Expansion at Century Mine Creates 300 New Jobs:

It has recently been announced that American Energy Corporation (AEC) is in the process of building a new mine at the Century Mine complex in Alledonia. According to a press release from Murray Energy Corporation (AEC’s parent company), the project was undertaken more than a year ago and will create “approximately 300 additional high paying jobs.” This will bring the total employed at Century Mine to nearly 1000.

The new mine will come via a new mine slope and preparation plant. At 84 inches wide with an 8000 HP motor, the conveyor belt is to be “among the largest ever installed in a mine slope.”

Recorder’s Office Continues to be Busy Due to Oil and Gas Activity:

The numbers involved in the increased business for the office are simply staggering. Monroe County Recorder Ann Block said there have been as many as 70 researchers in the office at one time. So much research is being done that some of the records books have been used to the point of decay.

Block welcomes the increased activity in her office.  “We enjoy it and look forward to it every day,” said Block, “Providing prompt and flexible service to the oil and gas industry helps our citizens secure the documents needed for mineral rights faster.”

District Spelling Bee Winners:

The Switzerland of Ohio Local School District held their District Spelling Bee on Jan. 17. Peyton Hall from Sardis Elementary was the overall winner. Justin Riley of Beallsville High School was the runner-up. Allison Bennet of Hannibal Elementary topped the fourth to sixth grade age group.

Earning a place at the regional spelling bee, in addition to the top three, were: Kyra Stewart, Sardis Elementary; Breanna McElwain and Brandon Tucker, Powhatan Elementary; Katelyn Huck, Skyvue Elementary; Cheyenne Wilson, Woodsfield Elementary; Charles Brewer, Beallsville Elementary; and alternate Zac Jones of Woodsfield Elementary.

 

February

Monroe Central Alum Aleisha Guiler Scores 1,000 Points at Marietta College:

Monroe Central alumna Aleisha Guiler continues a stellar season and career for the Marietta College Lady Pioneers. On Wednesday, Jan. 25, Guiler reached the 1000 career points benchmark in an 80-63 loss to Muskingum College. Few players ever reach the milestone, and Guiler’s accomplishment becomes even more impressive because she is only a Junior this year.

Question Presented to Skyvue Area: Build New or Renovate?:

A special Board of Education meeting of the Switzerland of Ohio Local School District was held at the current Skyvue Elementary School on Feb. 13 to discuss plans for a future Skyvue Elementary. The meeting was held in the gymnasium and was host to well over a hundred concerned citizens.

By the end of the meeting, the debate was as hot as ever. There were clearly some that supported building a new school and some that supported renovation. It was made clear by the school board and by the architect Byron Manchester, that there will be extra costs involved with renovation that will have to be eaten by the district. However, Manchester said, “I am not here to scare you about renovation. I would love to do either one of these for you. I think these students deserve a building here. I don’t think there’s a question in my mind on quality. We’ll give you everything we can within our budget.”

• Delmas Moore Honored For His Dedication to Kids:

It’s all for the kids. That’s Delmas Moore. He has dedicated 41 years to the students of the Beallsville schools and their sports programs. Moore was inducted into the Beallsville’s Legends Club during the last regular season boys’ basketball game Feb. 7.

Beallsville Students & Staff Move Into Their New School:

The scene on Friday at Beallsville’s shining new school building was one of excitement and anticipation. The building bustled with activity as the moving process began with students bringing  their books, supplies, and personal belongings from the old school building.

While the adults were all excited about the move, the true joy of the day could be found in the kids. A staff member said she was on a bus with a group of younger elementary students coming to the school. She said, as soon as they came into view of the school, the kids erupted in excitement. Among the excitement, shouts of “That’s our school!” were heard.

Negotiations Net Unheard of Terms For Oil and Gas Leases:

During October 2011, Bruce Stephen, Tammy Deitch, Earl Anderson, Scott Stephens, Thomas Piatt and John Baker formed the Northwest Monroe Landowners Group. The purpose of this group was to promote landowners’ oil and gas rights. Their goals were: to negotiate a bonus payment of $5,900 per acre or more; to make every effort to negotiate a royalty payment of 21 percent or more; and to negotiate landowner-friendly terms in an oil and gas lease with the driller.

Northwest Monroe Landowners Group did just that in signing a deal with Utica Landowners Group located in St. Clairsville. “We believe this is the best negotiated deal in the state for a group,” said John Baker. “The company has invested over $100 million in this group. We believe NWMLG has set a new street price per acre. It’s unheard of as a group.”

 

March

• Seismic Survey Conducted in Area

The mystery of the little orange flags lining SR 78 has been solved. Many thought the flags had to do with the paving project set to take place on the road this summer. However, like most happenings in Monroe County these days, the flags were actually related to oil and gas activity. 

 

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