Ronceverte City Council met on Monday and agreed to approve a five-year contract with Gateway Industries to take over the community gardens area at Island Park, in order to use the site as a skills training opportunity for their clients.
Gateway plans to build another high tunnel to raise vegetables for sale, some of which will also go to local food banks. City Manager Reba Mohler said the site, which has been closed and abandoned since the flood, will no longer be used as a community garden with Gateway’s take-over. “This is a fantastic program for Gateway’s clients,” Mayor David Smith said. A motion to approve the contract was unanimous.
In other city business:
• Council approved a motion to work with the WV Municipal League in requesting the legislators and Governor Jim Justice pass and sign legislation removing the sunset date in WV Code 8-1-5A to make the Home Rule Program a permanent one in West Virginia. The Home Rule Pilot Program has been used successfully with current participating municipalities, allowing innovative and progressive problem solving at the local level, empowering the municipal citizen and placing local control at the local level. The City of Ronceverte seeks the opportunity to join should and when the governing body chooses to do so.
• The parks and recreation commission rejected two bids for a maintenance contract for Island Park at a recent meeting. Both bids were too high, coming in at $16,000 and $14,600 to mow the park fields.
The city was paying the previous contractor $5,400 for the work. Mohler said the city has opted to pay two people $10 per hour to mow the fields, and lay them off over winter.
• Bob Hazelwood, consultant with E.L Robinson engineering, recommended the council use $20,000 in available funds to purchase leak-detection equipment that quickly scans a large area, allowing crews to driving by underground meters and download data that measures water usage at each site. Council will consider the recommendation.
• Tim Thomas, the new director of the Mountain Transit Authority, stated the MTA is looking to adjust some of their routes, possibly including a route going to the airport, depending on need and expense.
“The MTA, as a general transportation system, is a gem not uncovered yet,” he said. Under his direction, Thomas said he is looking to expand the MTA system and is consider teaming up with other transit systems around the state.
Announcements from council include the following: For more information, call City Hall at 304-647-5455:
• Community Thanksgiving Dinner – 5 to 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 10, Trinity United Methodist Church, Ronceverte
• A free Thanksgiving Dinner will be served by When Pigs Fly on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22, at the state fairgrounds
• Christmas Parade – 7 p.m. on Dec. 3
• Downtown Merchants’ Holiday Shopping Day – Dec. 6, will include carriage rides, music and Santa Claus
• 40th Year Ronceverte Library Fundraising Dinner – Dec. 7, Edgarton Inn
For information on the date and time of the Community Christmas Dinner, held annually at Trinity United Methodist Church, please call Trish at the church at 304-647-4504.