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Sistersville City Council Discuss Parking Problems and Stray Cats

By Staff | Jul 19, 2017

Sistersville City Council members met on Monday where they discussed some of the parking issues around town. A concerned citizen brought to the attention of council that his parking situation is being compromised between his neighbor and a parking lot. There was an original proposal that indicated that the parking lot would be built in a different location than where it ended up. Had it been built along the lines of the original proposal, there would be no current issue. Mayor Rice explained that this decision was made under the former administration and he felt the situation was out of his hands. Council stated that if the neighbor has an issue then they must come to council to present the issue.

It was reported to Mayor Rice that the sewer plant had their initial meeting with S&S Engineering in regards to the bond money. They gave S&S Engineering a list of items that needs to be upgraded before continuing with the study of the plant.

The pool board mentioned that June has been rough month with the robbery of Sistersville pool. The thieves stole food, drinks and an empty cash register. There is currently a lead on the suspect. It was recommended that the cash register be left open at nights to show suspecting prowlers that there is no money to be taken. The board also plans on purchasing security cameras to install around the park to help increase safety.

There are several activities and free swim days planned for the month of July, as well as several pool parties booked. There will be a night swim, as well as other activities, planned in August before school starts back up.

Barbara Vincent reported that the “Picnic in the Park” was a great success and she wanted to thank everyone that helped out and supported the event. Mayor Rice commented, “It was great, the fireworks seem to get better every year.”

The water department announced that they are trying to get solid numbers on exactly how much water the city of Sistersville would need per month to be distributed from Friendly.

It was brought to the attention of council that the alley between Riverside and Main Street was recently surveyed and the alley doesn’t match the 1840 map of Sistersville. The map depicts the alley as being a straight line whereas it actually bends so the buildings that curve with the alley are technically infringing upon other properties. It was suggested that the city of Sistersville file some corrected documents to correctly depict the curvature of the street. A motion passed to draft an agreement accepting a new map based off the current survey.

It was announce that Taylor Abbott has been accepted to the Sisterville Ferry Board to replace Eric Peters. Peters has recently stepped down from his board position.

The topic of all terrain vehicle usage in town came back up. It was determined that you must be 16 years or older with a valid license or 18 years or older to operate on city streets. They must abide by all laws, use lights after dark, and ATV must be registered. ATV’s are not to be permitted in the city park. There is an exemption for anyone who is over 25 and is insured but has never owned a license.

Council members spoke with representatives from the Olive Branch about the amount of stray cats that are running through the city. The Olive Branch stated that they are max capacity of cats and can’t take in any more. There is a program where cats are being trapped, spayed or neutered, and then being released back into the wild. This will cause the cats to stop producing but there will be no immediate effect. It is a process that will take a very long time. The problem is that the residents of Sistersville would like to see the cats gone as soon as possible to avoid property damage.

Unfortunately, if the Olive Branch would remove the cats from the area, they are very likely to return. Cats have a way of finding their natural environment. The Olive Branch is a “no kill” shelter and does not want to euthanize all of these animals. It was mentioned to Mayor Rice that the donation from Sistersville to the Olive Branch will go towards trapping, neutering, and releasing the cats.

The next scheduled Sistersville City Council meeting is for August 14, 2017 located at the Fire Hall in Sistersville.