MTC meeting short, hopeful and productive

Jaynell Graham
Marlinton Town Council met Monday night and flew through its agenda, most of which focused on improvements to the municipality.

Wayne Hypes, president of Dunn Engineering, updated council on progress pertaining to the town’s Water System Improvement Project. Hypes said that design plans are nearly complete and should be in council’s hands next month. From there, the town can move to the funding process and on toward construction.

Mayor Sam Felton added good news to the infrastructure discussion, saying that, as a result of a grant through the Department of Environment Protection and the Appalachian Regional Com- mission, the town will receive GIS mapping of its sewer system completed, free of charge. The only cost to the town at this time will be to provide an employee to assist the mapping team in showing them where the man holes are located and the vicinity of the lines, Felton said. The team will put together maps and a manual of the system.

Going forward, as extensions and revisions are made, the town will be required to pay the standard hourly fee for updating the maps and manual.

Marlinton will be only the second town to have its system mapped under this grant.

“I wish we’d had this fifty years ago,” councilmember Norris Long said. “And think about future mayors and councils. When you keep changing people, you can’t remember what’s out there.” 

Recorder B. J. Gudmundson agreed.

“This is an example of things that you do that a council down the road looks back on and goes, “wow! They did this.”

Council member Don Morrison added that it will be a great help to the town crew, as well.

April is Clean-Up Month

The month of April heralds the town’s annual clean-up program. In the past, this project was confined to one week of the month, wherein residents and businesses were encouraged to clean away winter debris in anticipation of spring. The town provides free hauling service for some large items. Pick up may be scheduled by calling the town office. Trash bags are also provided by the town.

Something new is in the air this year.

Jill Wong, of the Family Resource Network, is assisting with the project.

Early on, Felton identified 12 areas in town that needed attention, and Wong reported to council Monday night that all 12 of those areas have been adopted by various groups and organizations – to clean up and to maintain them throughout the spring and summer.

In anticipation of these improvements, council voted to extend the clean-up period from one week to two, and set aside funds to support the project.

Clean-up will be from April 10 to 22, with a celebration at the gazebo on April 22. Refreshments will be provided by the town, and organizations and residents are encouraged to share before and after photos of the work that is accomplished.

Wong said she will send commitment cards to businesses and circulate flyers to residents in the town in an effort to make the clean up as successful as possible. GoMarlinton is supporting the project, as well.

In the realm of cleaning, council approved an Auditorium Agreement and Fees pertaining to use of the municipal auditorium. This agreement increased the deposit fee, originally set at $25, to ensure that the facility is properly cared for and cleaned following events. A refund of a portion of the fee will be made if the auditorium is left in an acceptable state. The increase in the scale of the non-refundable portion of the deposit is based on anticipated water usage in line with the number of persons attending each event.

In other business, council

•Adopted an updated Region 4 Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan

•Accepted the resignation of Laura Finch as town attorney

•Scheduled to meet March 9 at 5:30 p.m. with Lisa Sharp, Rural Development Coordinator for USDA

•Began discussion on the possibility of taking ownership and responsibility of Pocahontas Memorial Hospital’s water and sewer system.

•Kept on the table the First Reading of Amended Title VI Fire Protection ordinance for Fire Fee Assessment in the first response area.

Marlinton Town Council meets the first Monday of each month in council chambers on the second floor of the municipal building.

Jaynell Graham may be contacted at

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