POINT PLEASANT — The City of Point Pleasant is looking to put an ordinance in place to prevent panhandling.
Although panhandling hasn’t been a huge issue, council members asked City Attorney R.F. Stein to draft an ordinance outlawing the practice. Council members had received complaints about at least one individual asking for money in the downtown area at a busy intersection. Some council members noted there were several different churches as well as charitable organizations already operating in the city to help those who are in need.
At this week’s city council meeting, Stein said he had finished the ordinance forbidding panhandling in the city but needed a fine amount for those in violation of it. Council instructed Stein to place fines of no less than $50 nor more than $250 for the offense in the ordinance. Also discussed was the first reading of an ordinance regulating the use of golf carts and utility vehicles in the city. More on this in a later edition.
Stein also said he had drafted a letter to the title holder of a property on Mt. Vernon Ave. which many have complained as being an eyesore. The title holder is a bank in Ripley and the letter gave the bank a certain amount of time to address the issue. Stein also said the settlement agreement between the city and the owner of the former Wallpaper Outlet building, is nearly complete - the former Wallpaper Outlet adjoins the Franklin Building which the city owns. In regards to the Franklin Building, no bids were received on the parapet repair project and letters will be sent out again to hopefully find someone to take on the project which is a safety hazard on Main Street.
City Clerk Amber Tatterson announced a water bond CD the city purchased in 1976 and then later rolled over in 2011, had a value of $82,610. Council voted to cash in the CD and transfer the money into the general fund.
Tatterson presented a tentative budget for $2.6 million in the general fund and $12,000 in the coal severance fund for the 2014-15 year. Council will meet next month to approve the budget.
Tatterson said the City Wide Clean Up Day is from 9 a.m. to noon, April 5 at Harmon Park. Volunteers gather at the park and assist in picking up trash and beautifying the town. Council all agreed to reduce fees to $35 for a dump truck and $25 for a pick up truck to pick up items residents want hauled away as a result of spring cleaning. Reduced fees are for the week of April 7-11 only.
Ken Rollins, a former resident of Point Pleasant, spoke to council about the sport of frisbee golf and how it could be a recreational activity at Krodel Park. Rollins, who has designed frisbee golf courses for state parks in Ohio, said a nine-hole course typically costs around $5,000 and 18-hole course costs around $10,000 to construct. It’s estimated each hole needs one acre of playing space though the more trees the less space needed between holes. Rollins said unused land at Krodel Park may be a perfect spot for this type of activity. Council agreed to pursue looking into the idea of placing a frisbee golf course at Krodel. There are frisbee golf courses in Huntington and at Forked Run State Park in Meigs County, Ohio.
Council approved payment number 10 on the North Point Pleasant Drainage Project for $163,311. This includes payments to Mike Enyart and Sons (contractor) for $133,504; Burgess and Niple (engineering firm) for $19,806; Region II Development Authority (administrative fees) for $10,000.
Council approved renewing the city’s contract with AccuFund’s accounting system for $5,731 beginning April 1.
Council adjourned into executives session, with Attorney Michael Shaw, Jr. also present, under W.Va. Code 61-9-A-4b-9 which has to do with matters involving or affecting the purchase, sale or lease of property, etc. Shaw has been assisting the city with property matters involving the North Point Pleasant Drainage Project. After entering back into regular session, no action was taken.
Attending the meeting were Mayor Brian Billings, Administrative Assistant Teka McCauley, City Accountant Shannon Pearson, Tatterson, Stein, Council Members Janet Hartley, Bob Rulen, Charles Garland, Rick Simpkins, Keith Sargent, Allen Moran, Elizabeth Jones, Charles Towner.