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NM Council Holds Regular Meeting

By Staff | Jul 17, 2019

The City of New Martinsville Council Meeting was called to order following the regulatory prayer and pledge of allegiance. Mayor Steven Bohrer declared the quorum met with all six council ward members present. Immediately following the declared quorum, a motion for approval of June 2019 council meeting minutes and regular city invoices that had been discussed during the Department Head Meeting was met and carried.

The council then progressed to special agenda items. Patrick Durant, Superintendent of the City of New Martinsville Water and Sewer Department, brought the reminder and offered another reading of a municipal rate increase that goes in effect July 1, 2019. Durant reminded the council that it has been eight years since the last increase.

It was reiterated that the council is in expectation that this increase will afford necessary repairs on the city’s infrastructure. A motion was made for this reading and for moving forward; motion was unanimously carried.

The next discussed agenda item was in relation to guest, Earl Smith, a New Martinsville resident who lives near the Northern Community College. Smith commented and highly complimented the council and Sandy Hunt, President of the Wetzel County Convention Visitor’s Bureau, in regards to the recent Back Home Appalachian Arts and Music Festival. Smith emphatically gave appreciation and high praise for a job well done. Smith clarified how the bus load of youngsters that parked near his home interacted with him with respect and included him with their good time antics. Smith concluded his review by relaying his hopes for future events such as the Back Home Festival and specifically said that it was a “festival among festivals” and that he had the “time of his life”.

In matters relating to boards and committee reports, Iris Isaacs mentioned and gave warning of a fraudulent social security scam via phone calls. She furthered her report by saying how genuine these callers sound over the phone. Isaacs mentioned that they threaten to seize your assets with the bank and they specify how warrants for your arrest has been issued. Isaacs called the actual Social Security department in regards to these concerning and scary conversations and was told the government is having problems with these types of calls, and up to this point, have not been able to apprehend the perpetrators. The Social Security department also reassured Isaacs they do not place phone calls of concerning issues with American citizens; but instead, they would send out letters addressed to the individual.

In relation to the electric department, Chairman Council Ward 5, Joel Potts, mentioned issues with the traffic light at North Street (by Ace Home Center and the BP Gas Station) leading to Route 2. Potts related the green light timing on North Street is getting shorter and shorter. Potts turned the conversation over to New Martinsville Electric Department Manager, David White, for further explanations. White explained how the module in the control box which monitors the timing was hit by lightening. When this happened, the timing sequence reverted back to default settings. White reported the state engineer has been contacted and the necessary steps have been taken for the situation to be rectified. White finalized his summary by stating his understanding of travelers frustration and gave reassurance of a quick resolution.

In other matters, Chairman Council Ward 4, Steven Pallisco, gave his report in regards to the committee for streets and signs. Pallisco issued an update regarding the problems in association with Wetzel Street. It was announced that many complaints were delivered to this department in relation to the mass amount of dust and dirt that is stirred up on Wetzel Street. Pallisco announced a plan was in place to help reduce this issue. One said resolution which is being planned is a change in speed for all trucks. Where the speed for trucks has been set at 20 MPH, it will now be decreased to 10 MPH. It is hoped this decrease in speed, along with the continued sprinkler system set-up over the road will produce positive results.

Another change in the making which will effect truck drivers on Wetzel Street will be the proclamation that no Jake Brakes will be permitted. Pallisco declared that the department is weighing all options and will act soon. He also mentioned the street signs for the above mentioned changes are being created and asks for patience during this process.

Immediately following the department committee reports, Mayor Bohrer asked for any old or new business. With no items to report on either subject, Mayor Bohrer asked for a motion to adjourn. The motion was carried, and the meeting was adjourned.

The next New Martinsville Council Meeting will be Monday, August 5 at 7:30 p.m.