Sistersville City Council Members Discuss Water, Employee Handbook
The Sistersville city council meeting was held on Monday, Sept. 10 at 7 p.m. in the city council chambers at City Hall.
Tim Meeks updated the council on the water project. The infrastructure council application was submitted by the deadline and will put the city on track to make a funding recommendation by Nov. 7. The recommendation will include a $1 million grant, and a $3.5 million loan at a one percent interest rate for a 40-year contract. The loan contract can be re-negotiated every two years.
Gloria Williams was on hand to talk about the City of Sistersville employee policy handbook updates. She discussed the layout of the book and pointed out the additions that are needed regarding employment and labor law policies that the city is obligated to have in the handbook, as an employer.
The council approved the minutes of the last meeting and approved all city bills.
Mayor Bill Rice introduced Andrew Pratt, the city’s newest law enforcement officer. The city still has one officer vacancy to fill and will be conducting interviews. Mayor Rice continued with the news that there has been a change in arrest procedures, stating that St. Marys prison is now an intake for pre-arraignment arrestees.
What this means for officers is shorter transport time to the intake. In years past an arresting officer was tasked with transporting an arrestee to Northern Regional in Doddridge County, which left the city without an officer for several hours. With the new intake procedures set up at the prison, the arresting officer will now only have roughly one hour in travel time versus the three hours it used to take to drive to Northern Regional.
Mayor Rice says this shortened drive time will result in a more positive arrest decision for the officers, stating that a lot of times Sistersville officers will make the decision to write a ticket and let somebody go home instead of arresting them and transporting them to jail, solely based on travel time. With this shortened drive time, officers will now be able to make more arrests.
The Planning Commission discussed the issues with the new signs for the city, stating that the signs are too big at 15 feet high. Since the sign can’t be bigger than nine feet tall, one will be transported to MOVTI to be cut down before finding a place to put it. Another will be placed on private property and one in the city park by the flag pole.
The planning commission also reported that they are working on the new snowflake decorations for downtown and will be completed by Nov. 1. The commission is also needing volunteers to help decorate the city with Christmas lights this holiday season.
The council approved a motion to hold the annual Marble Festival Sept. 28-30.
The council approved a motion to hold the Sistersville third annual Hocus Pocus in the Park on Oct. 16, 6-8 p.m. at the Sistersville park. The festivities will include face painting, a spooky photo booth, a hay ride, story time, and will have popcorn provided by the Sistersville Fire Department.
The council approved a motion to hold the Spookhouse in the section of the old school that the city still owns. The spookhouse will be in operation for the last two weekends of October. Dates are Friday, Oct. 19 and Saturday, Oct. 20, and on Friday Oct. 26 and Saturday, Oct. 27.
In other matters, the council approved adding an authorized signature to the city payroll account.
The city council discussed the current garbage truck bids they have received from Hill International of Wheeling W.Va. The council considered two bids, one for a 20 yard garbage truck, and one for a smaller 10 yard garbage truck.
After a lengthy discussion, the council approved a motion to consider purchasing the smaller truck for the benefits of maneuverability in the small alleys of the city.
Also using the smaller truck will not require the driver to have a CDL license, which will result in an easier employee selection process.