River City sewer rates/regs ordinances withdrawn for fine-tuning

Ronceverte City Council voted to withdraw two ordinances which were presented for a first reading at the October council meeting. Upon review of Ordinance 2013-02, which establishes sewer use regulations, and Ordinance 2013-03, which provides for increased rates, charges and fees for sanitary sewer services to all customers served by the Ronceverte municipal sewer utility, the city’s attorneys with Spilman, Thomas and Battle of Charleston advised further development of both ordinances for clarification and to make them more workable. Both ordinances will be reissued when those developments are made, Mayor David Smith said.

By way of explanation for residents at the meeting, Mayor Smith gave as an example that if a business within the district was to put a substance into the sewer system that could compromise the limits of sewage that can be loaded on the plant on a daily basis. That, he said, could cause the plant to violate the compliance regulations imposed by the state. The current plant’s daily capacity is 1.2 million gallons per day, and often broaches that level, City Administrator Reba Mohler said in a phone interview. The proposed new plant will have a 2 million gallon per day capacity. The ordinance defining sewer use regulations will not affect residential customers as much as business or industrial customers, she said.

In other business:

• Police Chief D.R. Byer said October was a very busy month with six drug arrests. Five of them felony arrests and four of those were made possible through tip-offs from local residents. He commended city officers for the hard work they put in to get these arrests successfully completed.

• Doug Hylton reported the 2014 list of grants for Ronceverte totals $1,211,700. He cited several projects around the River City, mentioning the Island Park Amphitheater roof, City Hall, the Grand Theater roof, the Lewisburg Wholesale building, brownfields cleanup, the brick hill study, the Depot, and the pedestrian bridge, among others. He also mentioned that the restoration focus is currently on Ronceverte’s midtown section where around $10 to 12 million will likely be needed over a 10-year period.

• The Marie Leist Foundation, responsible for many restoration projects in Ronceverte, Hylton said, will receive recognition with a plaque at the cemetery, provided by the Historical Landmarks Commission. Plans are in place for larger plaques to be mounted in the sidewalks in front of numerous businesses in the downtown area detailing the story of each building and its original owner as a unique way to inform visitors and locals alike of Ronceverte’s long and colorful history.

• City Administrator Reba Mohler announced the closure of a water escrow account with First National Bank established to set up payments to the City of Lewisburg to cover Ronceverte’s balance due on water usage. Mohler said the last payment has been made and the account is now closed.

• Basketball signups for first to eighth grade students have been scheduled for 2 consecutive Saturdays. Nov. 9 and 16 at the Lions Club gym.

• City Hall will be closed Nov. 11 for Veterans Day, and again Nov. 28-29 for Thanksgiving, City Administrator Mohler said.

• The Christmas Parade is scheduled for Monday, Dec. 2 at 5 p.m.

• On Dec. 4, the Edgarton Inn Bed & Breakfast is serving up a French Christmas Repast as a fundraiser for the Ronceverte library. To reserve a place setting for either lunch or dinner, tickets can be had at the library for $30 per person.

• The Trinity Unity Church will host a Community Dinner on Dec. 7 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The entire community is welcome.

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