Town of Mason responds to recent storms
by Nathan Jeffers
MASON — At a recent meeting of the Town of Mason Council, members discussed the aftermath of the June 29 storms and some ways the town could be better prepared should something similar happen again.
In addition to updating the council on the costs of running the town during the power outages, Mayor Mindy Kearns stated she is planning to attend a Local Emergency Planning Commission meeting on July 25, where several ideas and possible plans will be discussed should a disaster of this magnitude strike again. Kearns also said the availability of some grant money would also be discussed.
“Mason could really use a generator,” Kearns said.
Kearns stated the city building was without power for a total of five days.
It was also announced during the meeting that council members are working on an emergency contact list for any residents in town who may live alone, including elderly residents and residents who are on oxygen. Kearns stated the purpose of the list was simply to check in on residents during emergency situations and make sure those residents are doing okay. Council members are encouraging residents who live alone to contact the city building at 304-773-5200 to be put on that list in case of another emergency.
Also at the meeting there was a discussion on purchasing a building located behind the city building. Kearns stated the Clifton United Methodist Church currently owns the building and have approached the town about purchasing it. Kearns said council viewed the building prior to the meeting and negotiations for the purchase haven’t taken place yet, but the city could use it for a number of things. Kearns stated it could be used for the storage of items normally kept at the sewer plant, which would in turn keep the equipment in better shape. Kearns also said the city building has numerous boxes of records that must be kept for at least 50 years which are starting to pile up, which could be stored in the new building, and it could also serve as a place for town employees to work on town vehicles.
There are also several new ordinances in the works for the town. It was reported the town’s lawyer is currently working on a vagrancy ordinance and an ordinance enforcing the weight limit signs located on back streets. As previously reported, the vagrancy ordinance came about after a couple stayed in a tent near the park and the council decided there needed to be something in place to prevent similar situations. Kearns wasn’t sure when the ordinance would be implemented, but she said the town’s lawyer would have it ready to view in a couple of weeks.
Kearns also discussed the weight limit ordinance, stating there have been several large trucks traveling from business to business on the back roads as opposed to the main road. Kearns stated the town recently finished a paving project last year on these back roads and do not want the large trucks to destroy the paving. A date for this ordinance wasn’t known either, but Kearns said it was also being worked on.
In other council news, Kearns stated the assessor’s office has ticketed out of state vehicles throughout the town in order for the owners to prove residency within two weeks. If residency cannot be proven, then the owners will be ticketed. Councilwoman Sarah Stover also asked about the pot holes on Fruth Lane. Kearns stated the work on that road should be done this week.
Councilman Nick Northup also showed concern for the safety of the structure of the Lewis house. He asked Kearns to contact whoever is in charge. Councilman James Pauley also made a motion to hire Terry Powell as a part-time police officer, starting at $10 an hour, with a second from Councilman Northup. Motion carried.
Also making personal appearances were Larry Daniel and Frank Zuspan. Daniel stated the next neighborhood crime watch meeting will be at 6 p.m. on Aug. 7 in the town’s community room.
The minutes from June 21 were read and accepted with a first from Councilwoman Stover and second from Councilman Northup. Several bills were also presented and accepted for payment with a first from Councilman Northup and a second from Councilman Pauley.
In addition to Mayor Kearns, council members present were James Pauley, Nick Northup, Marty Yeager, Sarah Stover and Recorder Deann Russell. Absent was Michelle Pearson.
The Town of Mason Council will meet again at 6:30 p.m., tonight, July 19, in the town hall.
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