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NEWS
by MATTHEW UMSTEAD | March 1, 2007
MARTINSBURG, W.VA. - The West Virginia House of Delegates on Wednesday passed a bill that would add a third family court judge in 2009 for Berkeley and Jefferson counties, where an increasing caseload is causing substantial delays in proceedings, according to 24th Circuit family court judge Sally Jackson. "If you file for a divorce today, it probably will be 90 days before you get your first hearing," Jackson said. "People shouldn't have to wait that long. " If enacted, House Bill 3106 would allow for the election of 10 more family court judges statewide in 2008 and redraw nine circuits.
NEWS
April 19, 2001
Family court plan requires lawmakers' okay this year At the end of every legislative session, there are matters that aren't acted on because time just runs out. But knowing that doesn't mute our disappointment over the West Virginia Legislature's failure to approve a family court system. The need is undeniable, which makes the fact that it's being sidetracked even more regrettable. The move to create a new court that would handle all family-related issues, including divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and domestic violence petitions was approved last November, when citizens voted to amend the state's constitution.
NEWS
January 23, 2001
W.Va. committee looks to design new family court system By BOB PARTLOW / Staff Writer, Martinsburg MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - The state of West Virginia is taking the first steps toward building a new system for resolving family disputes. A statewide committee is meeting to design a new family court system to replace family law masters, who now handle most family disputes. The committee is trying to determine the wishes of voters. In Nov. 7 balloting, 73 percent of voters favored the concept of creating a unified family court system.
NEWS
By RICHARD F. BELISLE | richardb@herald-mail.com | April 1, 2012
West Virginia's first Juvenile Drug Court opened in Cabell County, W.Va., in 1999, and it's taken 13 years for the benefits of the program to reach out to youngsters heading for trouble in the Eastern Panhandle. Family Court Judge David Greenberg, who presides in Berkeley and Jefferson counties, is heading the local program. He said it's designed to keep offenders ages 10 to 17 who use drugs or are at high risk for substance abuse out of jail and on a path to a productive life free of drug use. The program is part of a national movement.
NEWS
March 24, 1999
Before adjourning Monday, the West Virginia Legislature did its best to clean up a family-law bill marred by a lawmakers' squabble that led to it being passed with a number of technical errors. It remains to be seen, however, whether lawmakers' best efforts at a last-minute repair were good enough. The bill begins the transition from the current system of family law masters to a new, separate family court, with its own elected judges. Family judges will answer to current circuit court judges until the public approves a constitutional amendment making them full-fledged judges.
NEWS
March 8, 2007
Bath amends snow removal ordinance BERKELEY SPRINGS, W.Va. Snow or ice must be removed from sidewalks in the Town of Bath within 24 hours by the property owners or persons occupying the property adjacent to the sidewalk, according to an amended Bath ordinance presented Monday night. In addition to the snow and ice, no accumulation of trash, debris or anything unsanitary is allowed on sidewalks or within five feet of the sidewalk and must be removed as well by property owners or residents.
NEWS
By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | October 29, 2008
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A state family court case coordinator, a retired special federal agent and a county sheriff are hoping to unseat one of the five state magistrate court judges who are up for re-election on Nov. 4 in Berkeley County. Berkeley County magistrates are paid $50,000 annually by the state and are elected to four-year terms. Ywatta "Nessy" Mitchell, 36, of Martinsburg, has worked for the state's family court system since 1996 and was the tri-county's first family court case coordinator in 1999.
NEWS
By CANDICE BOSELY | May 27, 2003
martinsburg@herald-mail.com Call it irony. At the same time Berkeley County commissioners recently listened to a presentation dealing with, in part, the security measures that will be implemented at a planned judicial center, a problem was brewing in a courtroom across the street. A man unhappy in Circuit Judge Gray Silver III's courtroom - actually a meeting room that sometimes is used to hold court - voiced some choice words toward the judge. Faced with an angry man in close quarters, Jeff Wilkins, one of the bailiffs who confronted the man, said a struggle ensued and a door got knocked off its hinges.
NEWS
by CANDICE BOSELY | December 19, 2003
martinsburg@herald-mail.com MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Berkeley County Commission members signed paperwork Thursday that will allow them to move forward with construction of a planned judicial center. The center, which would be completed in 2006, would house Circuit Court, Magistrate Court, Family Court, the prosecuting attorney's offices, court clerk's offices and the probation department. Those offices currently are scattered among five buildings. The four-story judicial center will be in the Berkeley Building - one of three old warehouses off Raleigh Street that formerly was part of the Blue Ridge Outlet Center.
NEWS
By JULIE E. GREENE | February 29, 2008
It's not a topic many people want to think about - their own mortality. But if you're the parent of a minor child, it's a possibility that should not be ignored. If death came for you tomorrow, who would care for your child? Perhaps it would be a family member or friend. Don't assume that if your child has a godparent, that person is the guardian unless you've already made that arrangement with your child's godparent - and in your will. Naming names The last will and testament is the easiest way to set up guardianship for a minor child in the event of a parent's death, according to Tri-State-area family attorneys and a family court judge.
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NEWS
By JENNIFER FITCH | waynesboro@herald-mail.com | May 9, 2013
The three men running for judge in the 39th District of the Court of Common Pleas faced questioning Thursday night during a forum preceding the primary election. Attorneys Jeffrey Evans, Jerrold Sulcove and Jeremiah Zook are running for the open seat on the bench created by the retirement of Richard Walsh. The 39th District serves Franklin and Fulton counties. The Franklin County Democratic Committee held the event at the Shady Grove Community Center in cooperation with the Greencastle-Antrim Democratic Club.
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NEWS
By RICHARD F. BELISLE | richardb@herald-mail.com | April 1, 2012
West Virginia's first Juvenile Drug Court opened in Cabell County, W.Va., in 1999, and it's taken 13 years for the benefits of the program to reach out to youngsters heading for trouble in the Eastern Panhandle. Family Court Judge David Greenberg, who presides in Berkeley and Jefferson counties, is heading the local program. He said it's designed to keep offenders ages 10 to 17 who use drugs or are at high risk for substance abuse out of jail and on a path to a productive life free of drug use. The program is part of a national movement.
NEWS
By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | matthew.umstead@herald-mail.com | July 14, 2011
The Berkeley County CouncilĀ  Thursday endorsed a proposal to allow pastors, priests and other qualified lay persons to set up a "listening post" in the county Judicial Center. County council legal counsel Norwood Bentley III cautioned that all faiths must be allowed to be part of the initiative and advised against the distribution of literature promoting a particular church or belief. "We just have to be ... helping people, not proselytizing or trying to convert people ...," Bentley said after hearing a presentation by George Michael, executive pastor of Independent Bible Church.
NEWS
By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | October 29, 2008
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A state family court case coordinator, a retired special federal agent and a county sheriff are hoping to unseat one of the five state magistrate court judges who are up for re-election on Nov. 4 in Berkeley County. Berkeley County magistrates are paid $50,000 annually by the state and are elected to four-year terms. Ywatta "Nessy" Mitchell, 36, of Martinsburg, has worked for the state's family court system since 1996 and was the tri-county's first family court case coordinator in 1999.
NEWS
By DAVE McMILLION | April 29, 2008
CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. -- A new 911 center in Jefferson County, W.Va., has been "hardened" to protect it from natural disasters or intruders. A new Jefferson County Sheriff's Department has several levels of security, including cameras and a gated area where deputies will be able to more securely move prisoners into their department headquarters. A newly renovated former Jefferson County jail in Charles Town will help provide needed space for growing county government operations and help tell the story of Jefferson County's history.
NEWS
By JULIE E. GREENE | February 29, 2008
It's not a topic many people want to think about - their own mortality. But if you're the parent of a minor child, it's a possibility that should not be ignored. If death came for you tomorrow, who would care for your child? Perhaps it would be a family member or friend. Don't assume that if your child has a godparent, that person is the guardian unless you've already made that arrangement with your child's godparent - and in your will. Naming names The last will and testament is the easiest way to set up guardianship for a minor child in the event of a parent's death, according to Tri-State-area family attorneys and a family court judge.
NEWS
By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | January 24, 2008
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Family Court Judge William "Bill" Wertman formally announced on Wednesday that he filed for re-election to the bench in West Virginia's growing 24th circuit. Prior to being elected to a six-year term in 2002, Wertman, a Democrat, served as a family law master since 2000. In his news release, Wertman said he is "committed to promoting positive communication between parents for the benefit of their children and safe, meaningful contact of children with both parents.
NEWS
March 8, 2007
Bath amends snow removal ordinance BERKELEY SPRINGS, W.Va. Snow or ice must be removed from sidewalks in the Town of Bath within 24 hours by the property owners or persons occupying the property adjacent to the sidewalk, according to an amended Bath ordinance presented Monday night. In addition to the snow and ice, no accumulation of trash, debris or anything unsanitary is allowed on sidewalks or within five feet of the sidewalk and must be removed as well by property owners or residents.
NEWS
by MATTHEW UMSTEAD | March 1, 2007
MARTINSBURG, W.VA. - The West Virginia House of Delegates on Wednesday passed a bill that would add a third family court judge in 2009 for Berkeley and Jefferson counties, where an increasing caseload is causing substantial delays in proceedings, according to 24th Circuit family court judge Sally Jackson. "If you file for a divorce today, it probably will be 90 days before you get your first hearing," Jackson said. "People shouldn't have to wait that long. " If enacted, House Bill 3106 would allow for the election of 10 more family court judges statewide in 2008 and redraw nine circuits.
NEWS
by MATTHEW UMSTEAD | December 1, 2006
MARTINSBURG, W.VA. - Berkeley County Commission President Howard Strauss said Thursday he could provide a list of items not yet completed in the new judicial center, but noted the county's 23rd Judicial Circuit judges decided to stay with their moving plan this week and open the building to the public Monday. Judge Christopher C. Wilkes said his office received a call from county officials on Tuesday indicating that the Judicial Center at 380 W. South St., was not ready for he and fellow circuit judges David H. Sanders and Gray Silver III. "Everything was packed by then," said Wilkes in an interview at his now mostly barren office at 110 W. King St. "The court felt we needed to move now. " Wilkes said his only inconvenience Thursday was being restricted to communicating with other offices on a cellular phone.
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