Mason hears garbage collection complaints

By Mindy Kearns - Special to the Register

MASON — Garbage service in the Town of Mason, as well as police department matters, topped the agenda of the most recent town council meeting.

Mayor Donna Dennis said she had heard several complaints regarding one particular trash company that operates in Mason. The company apparently has failed to pick up the garbage on a regular basis. She said she had also been approached with a plea for the town to start its own trash service.

The mayor told the council after having heard the complaints, both she and Police Chief Colton McKinney contacted various agencies to see what could be done, including the attorney general’s office. Each time, she said they were told it was a civil matter between the customer and business, and was not considered a town problem.

Council members, as well as residents attending the meeting, voiced they would rather choose their own trash service provider than have the town mandate its own.

Clayton Gibbs was hired at the meeting as a full-time police officer at a pay rate of $10 per hour. Chief McKinney said although Gibbs is uncertified, he holds an associate degree in criminal justice. The chief added Gibbs passed various tests he administered, based off of the West Virginia State Police basic class. Gibbs will attend the academy in August.

A new contract for police officers was also accepted by the council. The chief said new hires will sign a contract to stay with the department for three years. If an officer leaves before that time, he will be responsible for reimbursing the town for expenses incurred, such as training and uniforms. Credit will be given for the length of time worked however, at a rate of $91 per month.

McKinney also voiced that he is working to get a K-9 unit, and would like to hire another officer by the end of August from the present applicants.

In other action, the council:

Purchased two $17,000 pumps for the sewer lift station at the park;

Agreed to no longer allow the parking of any vehicles in the park beyond the locked gate;

Set Fourth of July activities as a noon parade and activities in the park from noon to 4 p.m. (additional details to follow at a later date);

Announced a public silent auction for surplus items to be held at town hall on June 16, 10 a.m. to noon;

Agreed to purchase property at 138 Brown Street in the amount of $7,800;

Discussed the possibility of hiring Gary Matthews of Jenkins-Finstermaker of Huntington as the town attorney;

Agreed to draw up a rental agreement for anyone wishing to rent the senior citizen center at $100; and,

Changed meeting times to the first and third Thursday at 6:30 p.m.

By Mindy Kearns

Special to the Register

Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at

Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at