We hope the situation New Martinsville has faced and will continue to face concerning the gas industry will bring a couple important points to all involved—and they have nothing to do with the specific issues at hand.
One is that governing bodies need to carefully consider their actions before they take them. It was said at Monday’s meeting that council wanted to pass an ordinance then engage in discussion. Careful research, public opinion gauging, and thought should go into a matter beforehand. Why would a person jump into a lake before knowing what lies beneath its surface?
The other is that citizens and other interested parties need to be aware and involved in local government. Council made a good point when they said their meetings are normally attended by about six citizens. Only after a controversial issue is brought about, once again in the past tense, do the citizens show concern.
Will that concern continue at Friday’s special meeting? How about at future meetings with gas companies that council talked about holding?
And one additional note, while the process can get “sticky” at times, we love the freedom of speech enjoyed in this country. Despite the controversy, Monday’s meeting was extremely organized and civil. . . just as it should be.