Governor’s Guidance for Week 7 Reopenings

The “Week 7” phase of West Virginia’s statewide reopening plan starts Monday, June 8.

Below is an excerpt from the governor’s West Virginia Strong: The Comeback web page showing the business categories that may reopen this week (with links to guidance documents showing safety precautions they should, and in some cases must, take):

Monday, June 8, 2020

​Wednesday, June 10, 2020

  • Private campgrounds and State Park campgrounds, cabins, and lodges to out-of-state guests (Stays may last no longer than seven days)

Click here for information about keeping up with the latest news and updates concerning the governor’s reopening plan.

Governor’s Guidance for Week 6 Reopenings

The “Week 6” phase of West Virginia’s statewide reopening plan starts Friday, June 5.

Below is an excerpt from the governor’s West Virginia Strong: The Comeback web page showing the business categories that may reopen this week (with links to guidance documents showing safety precautions they should, and in some cases must, take):

Friday, June 5, 2020

Click here for information about keeping up with the latest news and updates concerning the governor’s reopening plan.

Elkins Municipal Court Announces COVID-19 Precautions

Elkins, W. Va., June 1, 2020: Elkins Municipal Court announced COVID-19 precautions that are effective immediately at all hearings, city officials said today. These precautions, which are based on an order issued by the West Virginia Supreme Court (WVSC), include requiring all parties in the courtroom to wear masks, sanitize their hands, and maintain distancing.

Under these precautions, the only persons allowed in the courtroom at the beginning of any hearing will be the judge, the prosecutor, the defense attorney, and the defendant. Witnesses will be required to wait outside until called and leave the courtroom after testifying.

All persons entering the courtroom must bring and wear their own masks, removing them only if directed by the judge. Medical or N95 masks are not required.

“Any type of face covering sufficient to catch droplets leaving the nose and mouth, including homemade fabric masks or bandanas, is appropriate,” according to the WVSC order.

Persons arriving without masks will be considered not to have appeared, and the hearing will proceed without them. All persons entering the courtroom must also sanitize their hands and remain at least six feet from other people present.

Anyone who is COVID-19 positive, who has been in contact with anyone who is COVID-19 positive, or who is experiencing a fever or cough should contact their attorney and the court for guidance. Please contact Elkins Municipal Court Clerk Michelle Metheny, at (304) 636-7142 or, with any questions.

City Hall News: June 1-5, 2020

Elkins, W. Va., May 30, 2020: Council’s Finance Committee meets virtually Monday, June 1, at 10 a.m. The committee will hear updates on the city’s financial position, in addition to reviewing several proposed budget revisions.

Council meets virtually Thursday, June 4, at 7 p.m. The agenda has not yet been finalized but so far includes consideration of any budget revisions recommended for approval at Monday’s Finance Committee meeting.

Budget revisions occur when it is necessary to move funds from one line or department in the budget to cover unanticipated expenses in another. When funds are proposed to be shifted within departments, council’s approval is sufficient. When funds are proposed to be moved between departments, revisions are subject to review by the state auditor’s office to ensure the city’s overall budget will remain in balance after the change.

Council also plans to discuss options for and challenges to returning to in-person meetings.

Street paving will continue in various locations throughout the city during the first part of the week.

All council, committee, board, and commission meetings are open to the public. All meetings are being held virtually, using the Zoom platform. Login information and instructions for submitting public comments can be found here:

Governor’s Guidance for Week 5 Reopenings

The “Week 5” phase of West Virginia’s statewide reopening plan starts Tuesday, May 26 (with some categories of businesses opening Saturday, May 30).

Below is an excerpt from the governor’s West Virginia Strong: The Comeback web page showing the business categories that may reopen this week (with links to guidance documents showing safety precautions they should, and in some cases must, take):

Click here for information about keeping up with the latest news and updates concerning the governor’s reopening plan.

COVID-19 Testing Saturday in Elkins and Mill Creek

Covid Testing is Saturday, May 30

Elkins, WV – There will be a community Covid-19 testing this Saturday, May 30 at locations in Mill Creek and Elkins.  The tests are free to the public and will not be subject to pre-screening guidelines.

According to Elkins-Randolph County Health Department Director of Threat Preparedness Bonnie Woodrum, the testing will help state officials determine the amount of community coronavirus spread in the county.

Testing at both locations will be available from 10 am until 4 pm, or while supplies last.

In Elkins, the public may visit the Davis Medical Center (DMC) Covid Testing Drive-Thru Site located on the campus of DMC.  Valley HealthCare will provide testing at their site in Mill Creek, 6 Town Center Plaza, Suite A.

At the sites, medical staff will administer the test while motorists remain in their cars.  The screening involves a quick nasal swab, which will be sent to a state-designated laboratory for processing.  Testing will be by request, which means no criteria will have to be met, and no age restrictions apply.

Woodrum is coordinating the testing event with assistance from local groups including Davis Medical Center, The Office of Emergency Management, Randolph County Sherriff’s Department, Valley HealthCare, and the Randolph County Emergency Squad.  The West Virginia Army National Guard is providing 500 test kits for each site, required forms, PPE and coolers, and will pick up and deliver specimens. The Randolph County Sheriff’s Department will provide for support by law enforcement.

“Because our county has had a rapid increase in positive cases, including ones resulting from community spread, we need a better understanding of the magnitude.  This testing event will provide a good sampling from which to draw valuable data,” said Woodrum.

Residents should continue to practice coronavirus safety measures including hand hygiene, social distancing and wearing face coverings while in public.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Education (CDC), these practices can help reduce the spread of Covid-19.

Questions about the May 30, 2020 community testing should be directed to the Elkins-Randolph County Health Department at 304.636.0396.

May 28, 2020

Contact: Tracy Fath, 304.637.3467

Reopening Update for City Parks and Rec Facilities

No announced date for reopening Phil Gainer Recreation Center and Riverbend Park

Elkins, W. Va., May 27, 2020: At a meeting last week, the Elkins Parks and Recreation Commission announced reopening steps being taken at city parks and recreation facilities. As reopening proceeds, the commission advises all park users to observe recommended precautions for reducing COVID-19 risk, including distancing from other people, frequent handwashing or sanitization, and the use of masks where distancing may not be practicable.

Playgrounds at city parks are now reopened. Use of playgrounds is at patrons’ own risk. The use of pavilions is discouraged but not prohibited; no reservations are being accepted.

The 2020 summer day camp program has been cancelled.

There is not yet an announced date for reopening either the Phil Gainer Community Center or Riverbend Park.

Please visit for more information about these updates (including copies of relevant orders and guidelines), as well as an overview of COVID-19 response in Elkins and West Virginia.

City Hall News: May 25-29, 2020

Elkins, W. Va., May 23, 2020: Elkins City Hall is closed Monday, in observance of Memorial Day. Please join us in remembering American veterans who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms throughout this nation’s history.

There are no council or committee meetings scheduled during this week. Trash normally collected on Monday will be collected Tuesday instead. Please continue to place out items for collection by the Sanitation Department only in tied trash bags.

Tuesday begins the second week of Elkins City Hall being open to the public after its pandemic-related closure. Customers are still asked to minimize in-person visits and instead use online, phone, mail, and drop-box options for paying bills. All city offices are reachable via phone and email at the contact information available through this page of the city website:

If you must visit city hall, please help us keep you and city employees as safe as possible by ensuring that only two customers are in the lobby at one time and by calling ahead for appointments with second-floor personnel. Please also follow Governor Justice’s strong recommendations to wear masks and maintain at least six feet of distance between yourself and other people.

Police department renovations are in their final weeks. New furniture, built by West Virginia Correctional Industries, has been delivered and officers are in the process of moving into and organizing their workspaces.

Work is also progressing on renovations to the Phil Gainer Community Center. Contractors recently removed the old ductwork and air handlers from the main activity room and rerouted sprinkler lines. A generator has been installed, enabling the building’s use as an emergency shelter if needed.

Boil-Water Advisory Lifted

May 22, 2020
Lab tests found no contamination from Tuesday’s water-main break. The boil-water advisory has been lifted, effective immediately.

Justice Calls Masks Crucial to Reducing Infections

 May 21, 2020

Masks are crucial to reduce the spread of coronavirus, Governor Jim Justice emphasized at yesterday’s press briefing.

He used the country of Japan as a comparison with the United States.

Japan has lost less than 800 people to coronavirus so far—that is, 800 cumulative coronavirus deaths.

The United States has lost an average of about 1,000 people a day since February 15. Our cumulative virus death toll is more than 93,000 people, as of May 21.

What’s the difference between the two countries?

Masks, Justice explained.

“In the nation of Japan… they’ve all got masks on when they’re outside,” he said. “They’re just trying to look out for themselves.”

Justice urged West Virginia to bring this lesson home to the Mountain State.

“West Virginia, please: wear your mask if you’re going to be out in a group of people,” he said. “Protect yourself and protect others. That’s all there is to it.”

A recent study found that, if 80 percent of people would wear masks, there would be almost no need for continued shutdowns: (This study has not yet been peer reviewed.)

Note on comparing the U.S. and Japan: Japan’s population is 38 percent of the United State’s population. To make an apples to apples comparison, multiply Japan’s deaths by about 2.6. Correcting for population difference this way, Japan’s cumulative coronavirus death toll is the equivalent of about 2,500 deaths in the United States—still considerably less than the United States’s cumulative death toll of more than 93,000.

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