Editor’s note: The same five questions were distributed to the candidates running for this particular office. Earlier in the fall, Weelunk solicited questions from you, our readers. Those questions are reflected here in this story. Candidates were invited to offer their answers for publication free of charge. The candidates are presented in the order of ballot position in their respective district. Numerous efforts were made via campaign websites, social media profiles and publicly available contact information and phone numbers to solicit each candidate’s participation.

FOR MARSHALL COUNTY COMMISSIONER

BOB MILLER (R)

What prompted you to run for office/re-election?  

Back when I first ran for my first publicly elected office in 2012, being my current six-year-term as a Marshall County Commissioner, where I serve as Commission President, I decided a time had come in my life to give back to the community by serving. During my term to date, I have worked to improve infrastructure, which is the responsibility of the Commission, such as Marshall County’s needed new Safety Building which houses the Marshall County Sheriff’s offices, EMS & 911. I have worked to improve the Courthouse and related structures, IT systems, etc. managed by the Commission. I have worked to keep the Marshall County Commission’s portion of the property tax the lowest in West Virginia while still improving overall operations of the county.

BOB MILLER

What do you believe to be the most important issues in your race?   

Continuing the extreme progress I’ve made working toward building the I-68 ENERGY CORRIDOR from the Ohio River to Morgantown in order to accelerate the amazing potential we have with the current growing Shale Gas Industry. The I-68 ENERGY CORRIDOR will offer economic growth which will encourage our kids for generations to live and raise their families here in Marshall County. I have legislation pending in Charleston to allow W.Va. counties to use some new revenues to help fund new infrastructure projects like water, sewer, etc., up to projects like assisting funding infrastructure like I-68. Since October of 2017, I’ve been invited to have four meetings at the White House regarding building the I-68 ENERGY CORRIDOR. The White House has also arranged meetings regarding the I-68 ENERGY CORRIDOR with the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Department of Commerce at their respective headquarters in Washington, D.C. I want to retain my elected position as a Marshall County Commissioner to be able to reach my goal of building the I-68 ENERGY CORRIDOR.

If elected, how will you improve the economy of the Northern Panhandle?

Besides my work toward building the I-68 ENERGY CORRIDOR, I proposed last year to economic planners, etc. a solution to the common concern for lack of conventional industrial sites in our region, which I refer to as High-Low Logistics Model, or as most now refer to it as just “Hi-Lo.”  Hi-Lo would use conventional sites with river, rail and highway access near rivers in our region as transportation logistics centers shared by multiple plants built on lower cost hilltops, which will be a multiplier of new available cost-effective sites. I have been working regionally since 2015 to encourage Ohio and Pennsylvania governments to work with me to plan and expand needed infrastructure to encourage massive expansion in our region of domestic and global manufacturers.

How will you tackle the need for improved rural road maintenance?

West Virginia County Commissions have no authority to maintain public roads. State roads are maintained by the WV DOH, and city streets are maintained by given cites.

What is the most important message you hope to get across to the voters?

I need their active support and VOTE FOR me so that together we can move Marshall County and our entire region forward for us and future generations to follow.

MKE FERRO (D)

What prompted you to run for office/re-election?  

After earning the voters respect and trust in District 4 (Marshall and a portion of Ohio Counties) for five elections over 10 years, I decided I wanted to focus my entire attention on Marshall County and its schools, businesses, seniors, VFDs, etc. Of the thousands of votes I made as a delegate, many of those affected counties and the people who live there. I will use that expertise to keep abreast of introduced bills and use my many contacts in the legislature to promote bills that help counties and “kill” bills that hurt them.

MIKE FERRO

What do you believe to be the most important issues in your race?   

Some of the important issues are providing adequate water and sewage to rural areas, increasing broadband capabilities, fighting the increase in opioid sales and usage, providing our first responders with the proper training and equipment, keeping the levy rate the lowest in the state, increasing salaries as funding becomes available, making sure out local workers get local jobs that pay a living wage with benefits, and working with the Department of Highways to repair and maintain secondary roads.

If elected, how will you improve the economy of the Northern Panhandle?

I would encourage businesses that pay a living wage with benefits to hire our local skilled workers to locate here, I would hire our local highly trained, drug free tradesman, and I would work with our local development group … REDP Regional Economic Development Partnership to encourage viable businesses to locate and become good stewards in our community.

How will you tackle the need for improved rural road maintenance?

I would continue to push the oil and gas companies to honor their commitment and abide by the law when using rural, secondary roads. I would also continue to advocate for a legislative bill that I have previously introduced. This bill would put 30 million dollars into a secondary road fund. The distribution to counties would be by production within the eight highway districts. For example, if District 6 … Hancock, Brooke, Ohio, Marshall, Wetzel and Tyler counties generated 20 percent of the oil and gas production, that district would receive 6 million dollars dedicated ONLY for secondary road usage. There would be NO new highways built with that money. Next, the 6 million would be divided by production within that district. Again, for example, IF Marshall County had 20 percent of the production, we would receive 1.2 million of the 6 million for repairs and maintenance secondary roads that would be set aside in a special fund. This would mean that the counties that had the most traffic and the most roads destroyed would receive the most money. I also have many contacts in Charleston at the upper level of DOH who I have worked with closely and who I have earned their respect.

What is the most important message you hope to get across to the voters?

My message to the voters would be that I am a true Marshall County supporter. I went to Marshall County Schools, taught 35 years at Moundsville and Sherrard Junior highs, coached for 40 years, substituted for 10 years, and was elected to five terms in the W.Va. House of Delegates. The only promises I ever made were to be accessible, visible, answer my phone and e-mails, and try to help people. When contacted, I never asked what religion or political party the concerned citizen belonged to. I always tried to help. I have also been visible in the county and attended fundraisers and events the entire 10 years or longer and not just during election time.



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