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Sistersville City Council Moves Closer to Sales Tax

By Staff | Nov 16, 2016

SISTERSVILLE – Sistersville City Council took one step closer toward approving a one percent sales tax.

During Monday’s meeting, council passed a first of two readings of the ordinance. Sistersville’s proposed sales tax would exempt cars, gasoline, prescriptions, non-prepared food (groceries).

A public forum on the matter will take place before council’s Dec. 12 meeting.

“If this passes, then the should not have raise any municipal fees in the foreseeable future,” said City Recorder Chad Edwards.

Edwards said though he can’t as yet predict how much revenue will be raised by the tax, any funds generated will go a long way toward needed infrastructure repairs and improvements as well as economic development, depending how the finance committee wants to allocate the funds.

“The first order of business is stabilization,” he said. “Getting done bills caught up and loans repaid. That shouldn’t take long. The finance committee will decide how the money will be spent, but I would say infrastructure will be the number one priority. We will not have a good gage on how much we’ll actually receive until the first year is up. The estimates are too far apart to say which one is the most accurate.”

Edwards said cities large and small have enacted sales taxes across the state. Parkersburg and Vienna have had such a tax for years.

Harrisville and Pennsboro – similar in size to Sistersville – have enacted sales taxes, he said.

In other news, Christmas parade will be at 7 p.m. Friday Dec. 2.

Mayor Bill Rice will kick off the parade by lighting the city tree here at the city building around 6:30ish. There may be some carolers and certainly a Santa Claus. Last year, Martin Parrish put on the red suit to capture kids’ imagination about Christmas.

Also, council discussed the fate of Wood Street. Repairs to Wood Street extension are being made. The city should be able to patch it up and keep it open for at least one year. Currently, Tyler County Schools have restricted bus traffic on the street.

And, council is moving closer upgrading the city’s aging water system not only by making meter reading more efficient, but the new meters can potentially alert the city about previously undetected leaks. If the city is to connect to Tyler Public Service District’s water supply, it must reduce its water loss rate.