Where History and Rivers Meet

City of Point Pleasant, WV

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Council Minutes
 

REGULAR MEETING
CITY COUNCIL
CITY OF POINT PLEASANT

January 9, 2006

WARD

NAME

PRESENT

ABSENT

Mayor James H. Wilson X  
City Clerk Stanton D. Burdette X  
City Attorney James M. Casey X  
Finance Director     X
Executive Secretary Harriett Nibert X  
Municipal Judge Jeremy T. Vickers   X
At Large Brian Billings X  
At Large Kevin R. Nott X  
First Ward James W. Fetty   X
Second Ward Robert C. Doeffinger, Jr. X  
Third Ward M. Leota Sang X  
Fourth Ward J Glen Long X  
Fifth Ward Elaine Grimm Hunt X  
Sixth Ward Ronald R. Kapp X  
Seventh Ward William H. Wallace X  
Eighth Ward Carol L. Jones X  

 


The minutes posted to these pages are the exact words contained in the official minutes on file in the City Clerks office. The format has been changed to make the information easier to read when presented in an Interned browser. Every effort is made to insure accuracy in transferring the information to these pages.  In all cases, the document on file at the City Building will be considered the official document.


J. Glenn Long led Council in Prayer. The meeting was called to order by Mayor James H. Wilson who led Council in the Pledge of Allegiance.

RIVERFRONT PARK COMMITTEE

PURCHASE SIGNAGE The Mayor recognized Darlene Haer of the Riverfront Park Committee. Ms. Haer updated Council on the status of the Park. She informed Council that as part of a grant agreement, an interpretive sign showing the old wharf and brick pavers that were removed from the Fourth Street entrance would have to be installed. She stated that WOOLPERT, Inc. had designed the sign and the State agreed that the design met the terms of a grant agreement. She added that the State would release the remaining T-21 grant funds once the sign was installed. Ms. Haer added that regulatory signs were also needed for the park showing facilities, handicap accessibility, etc. She added that there would also be a sign at the proposed marina directing visitors to the upper level of the park and an informational-welcome sign posted on the comfort station. She stated that the City had already received $25,000.00 in grant funds for signage from the Public Port Authority and $23,803.00 was now left after design fees. Ronald R. Kapp moved that the Park Committee be allotted up to $23,803.00 of the Port Authority Grant Funds to finish the signage at the park. J. Glenn Long added the second and the motion was unanimously approved.

OUTSIDE DELEGATION

TIM CLENDENEN Mayor Wilson recognized Mr. Tim Clendenen of 2102 Mount Vernon Avenue. Mr. Clendenen brought several concerns to Council. He stated that he felt that the City Codes needed to be enforced. He stated that there were code violations existing all over Point Pleasant with respect to distressed properties, trash, uncut grass, disabled autos and properties in a general state of disrepair. He added that many of the properties were rentals and that if the landlord did not want to fix them, they should be condemned and demolished. He stated that he understood that many owners of rental property were not paying any B&O taxes on their rental income. Mr. Clendenen added that rental properties were often a habitat for drug users and dealers. He added that a clean and neat town would help promote tourism. He stated as tourist did not want to visit a trashy town with distressed properties. Further, Mr. Clendenen asked if the City had threatened to condemn a property if the owner did not sell it or repair it. The Mayor stated that he and the City Inspector did buy a property from an individual who did not have the resources to either repair or remove the structure. Mayor Wilson informed Mr. Clendenen that there was a process that the City Inspector and the Enforcement Agency had to follow with regards to dealing with distressed property. The Mayor added that progress had been made on several properties but it was a slow process. Mr. Clendenen also stated that the $5.00 Business License that the City requires from vendors with booths or shops set up in the antique and craft stores was a deterrent to business. He added that he had spoken with several crafters and vendors who were going to stop doing business in the City. He stated that the antique and craft business was a big tourist attraction. In closing, Mr. Clendenen told Council it was time for the City to enforce the City Code.

MONTHLY BUSINESS

The Mayor asked for a motion to approve the minutes of the Regular Council meeting of December 12, 2005. Ronald R. Kapp moved to approve and J. Glenn Long added the second. The minutes were approved unanimously. The Mayor then asked for a motion to approve the Financial Statements of the General, Coal Severance, Water and Sewer Funds for the month of December 2005. J. Glenn Long moved to approve the statements and Kevin R. Nott added the second. The Financial Statements were unanimously approved.   The Mayor then asked for a motion to approve the Outstanding Obligations for the month of December 2005. Ronald R. Kapp made the motion and Kevin R. Nott added the second. The motion was passed unanimously.

CITY ATTORNEY

DISTRESSED PROPERTY City Attorney James Casey informed Council that preliminary work had begun on the property on 22nd Street but that results from asbestos testing would be needed before any demolition could begin. The Mayor stated that he had spoken with Howard Yeager about the distressed property on Main Street. The Mayor added that Mr. Yeager had received the Quit –Claim Deed from the City Attorney but that he had some questions for Mr. Casey. The Mayor suggested that if the City did not get a response from Mr. Yeager before the next meeting, the offer from the City would expire. J. Glenn Long moved to repeal the offer extended to Mr. Yeager involving the property transfer-park agreement if deed is not returned before next meeting. Brian L. Billings added the second and the motion was unanimously approved. CITY CHARTER CHANGES Mr. Casey stated that there had been some discussion about changing the City Election day to coincide with State’s Election Day. He stated that this could save the City approximately $30,000.00 every election. He stated that the City’s ward boundaries would have to match the County precinct boundaries in order for this to be possible. He added that no office holders’ term could be shortened and if the Charter were changed the next election would be held in conjunction with the 2008 primary. Mr. Casey stated that the Charter could be amended by Ordinance provided there was no opposition. He added that if there was any opposition to the change, the charter could only be changed by putting it on the ballot and letting the residents vote on it. J. Glenn Long moved to appoint a committee comprised of the Mayor, City Clerk, Councilman Billings and Councilman Kapp to pursue the issue of the election reforms. Kevin R. Nott added the second and the committee was unanimously approved. MUNICIPAL TRAFFIC SCHOOL The Municipal Traffic School Ordinance was not completed at the time of the meeting. J. Glenn Long moved to have the 2nd reading of the Ordinance at the February Council Meeting. KINGTOWN PROPERTY DISPUTE Mr. Casey stated that he had received a report from the property survey that was done in Kingtown. The property was surveyed because of a boundary dispute. He stated that it appeared from the survey that the property owner had built a portion of a structure on City property. Mr. Casey stated that the City could lease the property to the party or they could offer the City comparable property in trade. The Mayor suggested that the involved party work with the City Attorney to resolve the issue.

FINANCE / HUMAN RESOURCES

EMPLOYEE HANDBOOK-BENEFITS Mayor Wilson introduced Finance / Human resource Director Heather Thabet-Moore. Ms. Moore explained that she had conducted a survey of the City’s employees with regards to benefits. She also presented a survey of benefits comprised of other governmental and public works type of employers in the tri-county area. Some of the highlights were the health insurance opt out plan, defined retirement plan and revisions to the vacation and leave policies. Ms. Moore explained that the biggest issue that the employees wanted corrected was the retirement plan. She added that since the City did not pay high wages, it was necessary to have good benefits to attract and retain quality employees. Ms. Moore explained that the employees had a savings plan but that was not the same as a defined retirement benefit. She stated that the City could join the West Virginia Public Employee Retirement System (PERS) with the City contributing 10.5% of full-time employee payroll. The employees would have to contribute 4.5% of their gross earnings and PERS would require all employees participate. She stated the present cost to the City would be approximately $81,000.00. Ms. Moore stated that much if not all of the plan could be funded with savings from the opt-out health insurance program and contributions to the employee savings plan stopped and the funds diverted to PERS. Also, the Police department would not be included in the plan as they currently participate in the Police Pension and Retirement Fund. Also, Ms. Moore stated that new employees could roll-over any previously accrued PERS contributions into the City’s PERS plan and likewise if an employee left, they could roll-over into other employers PERS Plan. In closing, Ms. Moore proposed letting the sick leave time continue to accrue above the present limit of 120 hours and changing the vacation policy to mirror that of the City Police Department which earn 10 hours of vacation per month. Mayor Wilson added that the City employees were good employees and these were the issues that they wanted addressed.

CITY CLERK

AUDIT City Clerk Stanton D. Burdette reported that the City Accountant had finished the 2004-2005 Financial Statement and it had been forwarded to the Auditor. He stated that the Accounting Firm of Bassett & Lowe would be in the City later in the week to do on-site audit inspections. POLICE PENSION CONTRIBUTION Clerk Burdette presented the 2004-2005 City of Point Pleasant Police Pension Annual Report. He added that he would be sending information to the State certifying the current year contributions of $10,000.00. He stated that the State would issue a pro-rata re-imbursement of approximately $12,000.00.  

MAYOR WILSON

OHIO RIVER MITIGATION Next on the agenda was Mayor Wilson. Mayor Wilson stated that he had met with Madison Coal on the River Mitigation Project. He stated that the company had evaluated the area and decided that the Wildlife Structures would help minimize erosion to the river bank. He added that the company would make a presentation before Council as the project became more of a reality. BUDGET WORKSHOP The Mayor stated that City Accountant Jeff Feamster would be in the City next week to help prepare for the budget workshop. He said a workshop would be scheduled after the February Council Meeting.

VEHICLE PURCHASE The mayor stated that he had talked with Mr. Feamster about the ability to purchase vehicles for the Sewer and Water Departments from the Depreciation Funds. Mr. Feamster felt that the funding was there and the City had the ability to repay the Funds. The Mayor added that the Sanitation Department was almost breaking even and that a new garbage truck would need to be purchased soon. Ronald R. Kapp made a motion for the Mayor to secure bids for new trucks for the water, sewer and garbage departments. Carol L. Jones added the second and the motion was approved unanimously.

PAVING GRANT RESOLUTION The Mayor presented a Resolution empowering him to apply for $132,715.00 in Local Economic Assistance Grant Program Funds for Street Paving (Main Street) and allowing him to sign all associated applications and agreements. J. Glenn Long moved to adopt the Resolution and Kevin R. Nott added the second. the Resolution was unanimously adopted.

WVDOT RIVER MUSEUM GRANT RESOLUTION Mayor Wilson then presented a Resolution authorizing the Mayor to apply and execute all necessary applications and to enter into an agreement with the River Museum and the WVDOH for grant funding to complete the restoration of the River Museum Building. J. Glenn Long moved to adopt the Resolution and Kevin R. Nott added the second. The Resolution was unanimously adopted.

SLEIGHBELL BALL DONATION The Mayor presented a request from the Main Street Committee for the annual $1,500.00 donation to the Sleighbell Ball. The mayor added that the money was budgeted and the City donated every year. Carol L. Jones moved to approve the donation and Kevin R. Nott added the second. The donation was unanimously approved. FIREWORKS William H. Wallace stated that the Regatta Committee had not yet set the date for the Regatta. He stated that the Committee was looking at July 7, 8 & 9. Mr. Wallace added that the Regatta Committee would like to have fireworks but could not afford fireworks without the City paying for them. He explained that the sternwheelers and the fireworks were the biggest attraction of the Regatta.

COUNCIL CONCERNS

Brian L. Billings asked that signs be posted in the First Ward alerting motorist to the high volume of wheelchairs in the area. Ronald R. Kapp raised questions about the Business Licenses and B & O payments from vendors and crafters. Elaine G. Hunt raised concerns of heavy trucks traveling up Ohio Street. She asked that signs be posted there alerting motorist to children in the area. M. Leota Sang stated that she was not happy with the way the trees were trimmed on Main Street.

There being no other business, Kevin R. Nott moved to adjourn the meeting and J. Glenn Long added the second. The meeting was adjourned at 10:04 P.M. by unanimous vote.  

_______________________________ James H. Wilson, Mayor

______________________________Stanton D. Burdette, City Clerk 

 

 

 

 



 

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