At the Ronceverte City Council meeting on Wednesday evening, Doug Hylton announced that the River City has received $13,650 from the WV Historic Preservation Society for a study to restore Brick Hill “to its former glory.” The steep part of Pocahontas Street, which was first paved with bricks in 1925, is locally called Brick Street. A match of $5,850 to the city will complete the funding outlay.
Mayor David Smith, together with Hylton, were at the Capitol the previous week to receive the funds presented to them by Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin in the Cultural Center Room. At the meeting with the governor, Hylton said 52 counties were represented and received grant funding, while only 10 grants were given out to municipalities. Ronceverte and Lewisburg were among those municipal recipients of grant funding.
Hylton also announced a LEDA grant of $2,000 for the Ronceverte library and another for $5,000 that will go to purchase fire hydrants. He said an estimated cost of $421,000 will be required to wrap up the ongoing downtown streetscape project with new sidewalks planned for three remaining sections. A preliminary design for those sidewalks has been developed and will be reviewed by council members in the coming weeks.
Mayor Smith announced the BAD Buildings Technical Assistance Program will be coming to Ronccverte. BAD means Brownfields And Dilapidated. The city council hopes to start a year-long project to address those “troubled” businesses, industrial sites and homes around town. The technician will initially catalog each structure which comes under the category of BAD, create a database and map their locations. The database will give names of property owners, the tax situation and provide anything for anyone desiring to purchase needs to know. And then a work plan will be developed specifically designed for each structure. BAD Buildings is a new initiative, Hylton said, and Ronceverte is one of the first cities to be involved with the initiative, making Ronceverte’s success crucial to the program and to the city as well.
In other business:
• The Greenbrier River Classic Fly Fishing Tournament is set for May 1. 2014 as a benefit for kids. Sponsorships for the event are being sought. Those interested can reach George Simms at Simms Exxon at 304-645-1494.
• Allied Independent Wrestling Federation (AIWF) will host a wrestling event at the Ronceverte Armory building on Saturday, Mar. 22 at 6 p.m.