POINT PLEASANT — The City of Point Pleasant is moving forward with plans for Liberty Fest and discussed the annual celebration of the nation’s independence at its regular, monthly meeting on Monday.
In attendance were Mayor Brian Billings, City Clerk Amber Tatterson, City Attorney Joe Supple, council persons (at large) Robert McMillan, Gabe Roush, council members (by ward, staring first-eighth) Corrie Fetty, Paul Knisley, Cody Greathouse, Leigh Ann Shepard, Nathan Wedge, Judy Holland, Diana Hall, Dylan Handley. The meeting was held virtually via the Zoom platform.
Mayor Billings began the discussion on hosting this year’s Liberty Fest, which has become the annual celebration of the July 4th holiday in Point Pleasant.
Billings pointed out this year’s holiday falls on a Sunday and asked council’s thoughts on which day to host the event in regards to the holiday weekend. After a discussion on whether or not the festivities would interfere with church services, council voted to move forward with the event on a Sunday (the actual holiday) which will likely be held during the afternoon, into the evening and well after dark. Fireworks traditionally go off around 10 p.m., long after evening services typically end.
The vote was also taken in order to allow planning to secure vendors and entertainment. Wedge and Greathouse volunteered to work on securing vendors with Billings working on entertainment and organizing the parade with Tourism Director Denny Bellamy. Liberty Fest activities take place downtown and at Riverfront Park, which also allows downtown businesses to benefit from increased traffic. Billings stressed Liberty Fest will go on barring any COVID-19 issues.
Following publishing two legal notices in the Register and a public hearing which preceded Monday’s meeting with no comments received, a final reading was held and passed regarding an amendment which will allow the city to file a notice of lien with the county clerk’s office against real estate located in the city for failure to pay city service fees. Under the ordinance, a notice of intent to file the lien will be provided, giving an opportunity for residents to object and/or explain, then record the notice of lien.
Tatterson reported the 2021 Ford truck for the water department which will be purchased with a price from the state bid list should be available by April.
Council approved Tatterson applying for the state allocated funds regarding the police pension funds.
Tatterson reminded the approval of the 2021 budget is upcoming and will likely have to be done at an in-person meeting. It was discussed possibly meeting at the youth center, allowing for social distancing. Billings said with the exception of the budget meeting, which will require a review of several documents, he suggested council continue to meet via Zoom through April, depending on COVID-19 trends.
Billings said he was recently invited to meet with the Point Pleasant High School Football Boosters regarding upcoming plans for a celebration of 100 years of football at PPHS — 1921-2021. Tentative plans at this point include a parade through town, vendors downtown, music at Riverfront Park on Thursday, Sept. 2. Council approved the parade and use of the park. Billings said the boosters are still planning more activities and ways for alumni to participate.
Billings reported sewer department pumps had to be repaired for $8,000, installed on Feb. 4.
Billings reported the city’s street sweeper is in “terrible condition” and Street Commissioner Randy Hall found a used model in Cambridge, Ohio via a dealer in Gallipolis, Ohio for $50,000 which is a 2004 model, with 6,700 miles. New models are listed at $250,000, Billings said. Council approved the purchase of the used model.
Street Commissioner Hall discussed cemetery mowing bids and the need to advertise for bids. Council approved a motion to begin this process.
Pot holes are being patched likely the first week of March due to the availability of asphalt expected at that time.
Tatterson gave an update on the construction of the new Point Pleasant River Museum and Lakin Cook Learning Center, saying the contract with contractor Persigner & Associates of Charleston is official and their bid of $1.8 million, was under budget. Equipment has been moved to the site which is in the 300-block of Main Street.
McMillan thanked Street Commissioner Hall and the street department for their work clearing vegetation along the riverbank areas downtown.
Roush mentioned drainage concerns brought to him by a resident of Meadowbrook.
Wedge stated owners of the Captain’s Creamery, a soon-to-reopen business on First Street, suffered a break-in earlier this month. The owners have filled out a police report and Wedge asked if officers could possibly patrol the area more.
Handley mentioned in the eighth ward, several residents were having to replace their car tires after screws have been left thrown in the streets. Handley also mentioned vehicles were also recently, reportedly broken into in his ward.
“If you see something, say something,” Handley said, reminding all to report any suspicious activity.
All votes are unanimous unless otherwise noted.
© 2021 Ohio Valley Publishing, all rights reserved.
Beth Sergent is editor of Ohio Valley Publishing.