Officials said Randolph County schools will remain closed through the end of the week, but school facilities are being used to help residents suffering through the remnants of Superstorm Sandy.
"We have made an assessment of the Randolph County School buildings and road conditions," Phares said. "It is going to take us some time to get our buildings ready for reopening (for classes). They will need to be warm and safe for the children."
Phares said he has been working with the Randolph County Office of Emergency Management and helping deliver food to the emergency shelters being operated in the county.
"We are depleting our perishable foods, such as milk, bringing them to the shelters," Phares said. "We are unsure when deliveries will be made to facilitate our nutrition programs once the buildings are up to speed."
Phares said there are a variety of factors to take into consideration while working through this time of crisis. His priorities are to provide diesel gasoline to the Randolph County OEM vehicles as needed, and to provide two automatic school buses with snow chains to transport people as deemed necessary by the OEM.
"I have been actively involved in helping the Office of Emergency Management provide relief and have been delivering food to Harman and other local emergency shelters including Leading Creek, and shelters in southern Randolph County," Phares said. "I hope the citizens will realize the importance our community schools play."
"I also hope the citizens will get out and vote," Phares said. "Keeping these schools open is important and vital to the communities they are located in. The community schools play a vital part of their communities and every citizen located in those communities."
"When there was a need in July during the summer storm, and now, we provided as much help as we could," Phares said. "In my heart and mind, I know it's the right thing to do."