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Frequently Asked Questions
What are the policy guidelines for purchases?
According to West Virginia State Code ยง7-1-11, County Commissions when making a purchase of commodities and printing of more than fifteen thousand dollars in the open market shall be based on competitive bidding, and will provide a five (5) percent allowance for all in-county contractors or vendors, except in case of emergency. (This five (5) percent allowance would enable any in-county contractor or vendor to be granted up to a five (5) percent over the dollar amount on any competitive bid.)
For purchase of commodities and printing of one thousand dollars or less in the open market will not be based on competitive bidding, but will allow selection of a contractor or vendor of choice.
For purchase of commodities and printing greater than one thousand dollars but less than fifteen thousand dollars in amount shall be based on "open bidding" with a five (5) percent allowance for all in-county contractors or vendors, except in case of emergency and will be placed on the county website. (This five (5) percent allowance would enable any in-county contractor or vendor to be granted up to a five (5) percent over the dollar amount on any competitive bid.) (Open Bidding will not require a "legal-ad" as outlined in West Virginia State Code ยง59-3-1.)
In case of all contractor or vendor bidding the following information must provide the commission:
- Proof of valid West Virginia Contractor or Business License
- General Liability Insurance in the amount of $1,000,000/$2,000,000 incremental or aggregate
- Contractor Certificate of Workers Compensation
- Contractor Proof of Prevailing Wage Information
What is the County Commission?
The county commission is the governing body of the county.
What are the duties of the County Commission?
The Constitution provides certain powers to the county commission, but these powers are limited to "the manner prescribed by law." This means that the county commissions' powers must be expressly conferred by the Constitution or by acts of the Legislature. With respect to the powers of a county commission, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals has stated that "a county court (now county commission) possesses only such powers as are expressly conferred upon it by constitutional or statutory provisions, together with such powers as are reasonably and necessarily implied in the full and proper exercise of powers expressly conferred upon it." The West Virginia Constitution, Section 11, Article 9, specifically grants the following powers and duties to county commissions:
- The custody, through their clerks, of all deeds and other papers presented for record in their counties, with responsibility for their preservation or disposal as may be prescribed by law.
- The administration of the internal police and fiscal affairs of their counties, with authority to lay county levies, under regulations as may be prescribed by law.
- Serve as the judge of the election, qualification and return of their own members, and of all county and district officers, subject to regulations as may be prescribed by law.
Other duties and responsibilities are specified in chapter 7 of the West Virginia Code, particularly in §7-1-3. These include
- Preparation and adoption of budget for all county offices including Prosecuting Attorney, County Clerk, County Circuit Clerk, Sheriff, and County Assessor
- Jurisdiction in all matters of probate
- Appoint guardians for minor children; receive court settlements generally
- Own and maintain county property
- Sit as Board of Canvassers
- Lay and disburse county levies based on assessed property values
- Sit as Board of Review and Equalization in February hear appeals on property values for assessment purposes
- Appoint Fiduciary Commissioners to oversee and settle certain estates as required
- Appoint members of certain county boards, authorities and public service districts
- Adopt ordinances and orders in areas of jurisdiction as prescribed by law
- Approve purchase orders and payment vouchers for elected county offices, except judicial
- Provide and maintain a suitable courthouse at the county seat
- Support community services including the county health department, fire and ambulance services, county libraries, E911 center, solid waste management, and parks and recreation among others
- Lobby for more state funding of local programs
- Work to bring economic development to the county
- Respond to your questions and concerns as County Commissioners are the "front line" of local government