CITY COUNCIL: Future of Founders' Days?

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SALYERSVILLE - Salyersville City Council met on Thursday night, discussing Founders' Days plans, as well as updates concerning the City.

In the May 29 meeting, Councilman Jeff Ross asked Mayor James "Pete" Shepherd when the City would receive the $100,000 coal severance money, which is already earmarked to pay off the $50,000 loan to the County, with the rest of the money going straight to Salyersville Water Works. 

Shepherd said they should receive the money by July 1 and commended SWW for making "major headway" to getting out of debt.

"They've had to do it a little bit at a time," Shepherd said. "The auditor has been there, the commissioners are working hard, Jeff Bailey and I go to every meeting. They're slowly getting out of debt more and the water is good."

Shepherd said they did have to pay a fine to the Environmental Protection Agency regarding phosphorus in the sewer plant, however he was able to negotiate the fine down from $6,000 to $500.

The Council held their second vote on the ordinance setting fees for electrical inspections, as required by the state. Has Gullett had submitted his schedule of fees, which the Council accepted and complied with state regulations.

The Council also held their second vote on an addendum to the Alcohol Beverage Control Ordinance. . City Attorney Jeff Lovely said he took samples of the ordinance from the League of Cities and adapted the language to suit the City of Salyersville. Changes must be made to the ordinance in order to comply with Senate Bill 13. In a roll call vote, all city council members voted for the second reading of the ordinance. 

In the Mayor's report, Shepherd told the Council that last Friday was Brenda Powers' last day at the Big Sandy ADD and the Council publicly thanked her for her service to Salyersville.

Shepherd told the Council the sidewalks have now been washed down and they will look into putting up flowers throughout town next.

He said they have contacted the state for help cleaning the clogged drains in town, however, it will more than likely take months for them to be able to come in with the necessary equipment. 

Shepherd warned the public a den of copperheads have been spotted at the cut-through and urged everyone to be careful fishing in that area, avoiding it if possible. Eight baby copperheads and the mother were seen there last week, he said.

The old Valero, which was heavily damaged in the March 2012 tornado, is set to reopen in July as a Marathon. The owners plan to tear down the car wash due to the fact it had been gutted down to nothing but a breaker box, Shepherd said.

Within the next couple of weeks Shepherd said work will begin on Coal Branch putting in drain baskets to help with the flooding problems.

The City has received an order of coal patching and Shepherd said speed bumps and pot holes will be fixed soon. After June 30, blacktopping projects will begin.

The state will be doing the mosquito spraying this year, Shepherd said, alleviating the City from having to cover that work load.

While many complaints were received about a sewer smell near the Board of Education, he said a guardrail had poked a hole in the pipe, however the problem has been fixed now.

Shepherd said companies are supposed to be sending estimates for sirens and they will look at having three installed throughout town, with each one covered a two-mile radius.

By next meeting, he said the Council will have one or two old ordinances to check over and decide if they would like to change, amend or throw out, as Councilman Jeff Bailey had requested last month.

Per the letter from the Historical Society stating they are unable to sponsor Founders' Days this year, Shepherd said it will be the City's responsibility. He said he wants to open town up more for vendors' booths. The pageant directors have agreed to do their part, and the Historical Society wants to hold the contests for the schools. While more planning work will have to be done, Founders' Days are tentatively set for Wednesday August 27 through Sunday, August 31st, starting one day later than normal and consolidating some activities. He said they are looking into the insurance policies to make sure how and where vendors can set up, as well as for the potential for arts and crafts booths and carnival rides.