MARTINSBURG — Two new members were added to the Martinsburg Village Council at its meeting Monday evening.
“We now have a full house,” said Mayor J.R. St. Clair, “for the first time in a while.”
Both George Hewitt, who has resided in the village five years, and Mary Jane White, who has resided there 35 years, passed background checks. Both were sworn in Monday.
Keith Glancy, Clay Township trustee, was a visitor at the meeting, as was resident Richard Butt. Glancy said he had been asked by village residents whether the community center is self-supporting and if the center is audited. Ryerson and St. Clair replied that the center is operated by a not-for-profit committee that leases the building from the village, that it is indeed self-supporting and is audited, although not regularly.
Tammy Lahmon of the Water Board reintroduced last month’s discussion of billing the community center for water, which has never been done. The center generally uses, she said, less than 2,000 gallons per month, which would incur a charge of $15 per month. Other public buildings that are not charged for water are the town hall, the firehouse and the Clay township building.
There was discussion about whether council had voted in 1983, when the village water system was installed, to not bill for water use in the four buildings. St. Clair will research the 1983 council minutes to verify this and the matter will be discussed again at the April meeting.
Council member Donna Johnson noted that village street addresses continue to be a problem, including her own, which is apparently not on computer records.
“This is a very critical issue,” said St. Clair. “The Knox County 9-1-1 committee is working on this, and when it’s through with revisions, we’ll meet with the EMA.”
St. Clair also said he will contact acting EMA interim director Brian Hess.
Fiscal Officer Dedra Kidwell said four resumes have been received for her position, from which she has given notice, and two additional people expressed interest in the position. St. Clair will review the resumes and institute background checks before the council’s April meeting.
There was ongoing discussion about vacating unused North Street, West Street and Strawberry Alley. Ryerson said the roadways no longer exist and their remnants can no longer be seen, but they remain platted on village maps.
“They haven’t been used in the automobile era,” Ryerson said. “They haven’t been used for over 100 years.”
Property owners whose land abuts the streets and alleys to be vacated must be notified and given the opportunity to pay for a required survey. Ryerson said he has secured an estimate for the survey from Tracy & Mills Surveyors that could be paid for from the village’s street fund, if necessary.
St. Clair told council he is completing applications to take advantage of any available economic stimulus funds from the federal government. Council member Ginny Davis said she had received complaints about trash being blown about the village by the recent high winds.