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Marne Resigns From PCDA; LKRC&D Gives Checks

By Staff | Oct 9, 2008

Mayor Bill Fox accepted the resignation of Ed Marne from the Paden City Development Authority in the wake of a heated debate over the election and appointment of officers to the authority.

Marne spoke candidly about his feelings toward the guidelines set by the council and the fact that he was not contacted for his input into the matter.

He asked, “Don’t you think it would be prudent for those appointed to the board to have at least six months experience working with the authority or at least know the people on the authority before taking office?”

“I take it as a slap in the face that I wasn’t consulted, as the Chairman of the Development Authority bylaws committee,” Marne continued. “First I got mad, which is only natural. But after I thought about it for a while I wasn’t so much mad as I was hurt.”

“I’m tired of the hostility that goes on between the council and the Development Authority,” Marne said. “Why can’t we work together?”

“…That’s what I’m trying to achieve with this ordinance,” Fox said.

Taking the lack of communication personally, Marne submitted a written resignation to the mayor and the council along with a box of materials for the authority.

“I was going to respectfully give my resignation to the board,” Marne said as he placed the box on the table and tossed an envelope in the direction of the mayor, “but I don’t want the word ‘respect’ in there because I have lost that.”

A resident stood up as Marne was leaving the council meeting, pledging her support of the stand he had made, to which Fox replied, “I hope you also stand in support of this city trying to save a business.”

Fox stated that he was not sure how the council was going to keep Sprouse from leaving Paden City but they plan to sit down and talk about it.

Fighting for the floor as he banged the gavel against the desk, Fox added, “There’s a lot that goes on during the Development Authority meetings that never comes before this council. This creates a problem for this city.”

“As I said before, we had an election and I was voted in as mayor, if you don’t want me in here after two years, just vote me out,” Fox said. “But you put me in a position and I am going to take that position and I am going to take it responsibly.”

“What I intend to do with this council is to make decisions based on the best interests of this city,” he concluded.

Fox said that he had expressed long before taking over as mayor that he was not happy with what he had seen from the Development Authority. “What is happening here, now, with the Paden City Development Authority is the best thing that could happen for the citizens of Paden City.”

The issue at hand involves Sprouse Building Products. Currently the city is in negotiation with the Sprouse family to save hundreds of jobs and keep the company based in Paden City.

However, environmental issues at the site lead Sprouse to opt out of the sale.

“We do not want to lose 127 jobs,” Fox said. “And I don’t intend on seeing that happen and the council doesn’t intend on seeing that happen.”

“We need to worry about the people who are leasing that building. We need to find out why they want to leave Paden City.”

Fox blamed the issues with the deal on problems at the site no one is willing to address. “This is not something that came on yesterday or a week ago – it’s been going on for years.”

The council as a whole entertained the second reading of City Ordinance 153 pertaining to the management and control of the Paden City Development Authority. In a roll call vote, the ordinance was voted down with two votes for and four votes in opposition.

In other matters, it was brought to the council’s attention that people parking in the vacant lot beside the Eagles were going over the curb and sidewalk instead of exiting through the alley. The result of this action is breaking down the curbs along the roadway.

The council has also had several complaints about bushes and lawns not being trimmed in the city. Junk has also been reported in the area of Mills Street.

It was voted that trick-or-treat would be held in Paden City from 6 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 30 .

They also decided to make Oct. 15 through Nov. 15 burning season. Anyone interested in burning during this time should procure a permit from the city.

Additionally, Shirley Michael of the Little Kanawha RC&D and vice president of West Virginia Resource, Conservation and Development Association, was on hand to present two checks for community partnership.

The first was in the amount of $1,100 and was presented to the city for the parks and playgrounds.

The second for the amount of $1,000 was presented to Coach Brent Croasmun for the Paden City Boosters. The money is set to be used for the baseball field.