Sistersville's police force will likely be down one officer soon.
After an executive session that lasted slightly over an hour "to discuss personnel committee, police chief, personnel issue, and possible litigation", Sistersville City Council voted unanimously March 10 to authorize Police Chief Ben Placer to negotiate a settlement with a Sistersville Police Department officer and let him go out from under his contract, if that is what he desires.
The unnamed officer in question intends to resign and go work at the St. Marys Police Department.
"We're going to try to recoup as much as we can," said Councilman Bill Rice. "An officer who doesn't want to be here isn't going to do much."
Also, it was noted the SPD will take $1,600 from fund raiser money to pay for repairs to a police cruiser that was totaled. There was a $1,000 deductible and some other expenses the city must fund.
City Attorney Carolyn Flannery said the city would need to amend their parking ordinance in order to put up "No Overnight Parking" signs on Riverside Drive between Diamond and Catherine streets. Placer said the area of the Little Sister Well is of a particular concern, as brought up originally by Councilman Phil Konopacky.
Chief Placer said he looked at the city's parking ordinance and a list of signs and locations is part of the ordinance. "If the signs are listed, you'll have to amend the ordinance to list that," said Flannery.
It will likely be placed on the agenda for the next council meeting. The next regularly scheduled meeting is April 14 at 7 p.m.
Placer further proposed the city add $20 to their court costs. It will be used to help pay for equipment for the department. "This is new in the state of West Virginia," said Placer of the ability to enact the additional charge.
He further noted the additional $20 will still only make the costs on a city ticket $50, compared to $148 in magistrate court.
Flannery said since the city's court costs are not in an ordinance, they can make the change by motion as long as it is on the agenda.