Mareske discusses budget, coal crisis

J.D. Charles - Contributing Writer

WEST LOGAN, W.Va. — West Logan Town Clerk Mark Mareske discussed the town’s budget and how his town (and many others) have been affected by the recent downturn in the coal mining industry at the Monday evening meeting of the West Logan Town Council.

Governor Earl Ray Tomblin and the West Virginia legislature have been challenged in coming up with funds to replace money lost in the state’s budget due to the massive lay-offs in the coal mining industry across Appalachia and this in turn has affected most counties and municipalities in the state as well.

“Our coal severance taxes will be slowing down,” Mareske said, noting “they will be slowing down everywhere this year.” Mareske discussed the town’s budget and the budgeting process for the upcoming fiscal year which will start in July. He noted that renovations to Town Hall were complete and that there were still a few bills from purchasing supplies for the street department.

“Our fees to Waste Management are back down to where they should be,” he said.

Police Chief Robert Ward had some good news. He noted a new business will be opening up soon.

“They will be located in the service station across from Houn’dog Adkins store,” he said. “Al’s Auto and Small Engine Repair Service…. Al Adams will be operating it. In addition to working on cars and trucks they will also work on weedeaters and lawnmowers and such.”

Ward said January was a slow month for his agency with a few minor complaints. One was about a juvenile who was allegedly throwing snowballs at a resident’s property. Another was about a person who was feeding birds by putting out food on one of the salt barrels located throughout the town. A third complaint was lodged about stray cats running loose on First Avenue.

Ward said a more serious matter was 9th Street off Hicks Hollow, which had become washed out. He noted that Appalachian Energy had been contacted about a power pole that is leaning dangerously low on First Avenue near a residence. “It keeps slipping worse and eventually it is going to fall,” he said.

Ward noted that the traffic lights near the bridge had been changed out.

In other West Logan news:

  • One council member discussed a complaint about barking dogs on First Avenue. Another councilmember discussed a problem with a house in her part of town that had been vacated. She noted that when the residents left they also left behind a lot of junk and appliances. Chief Ward pointed out the couple who lived there had never paid their garbage bills which was why the rubbish had not been picked up. Mark Mareske said the property’s owner needed to be contacted and held responsible for paying the dump fee. “We won’t pick it up until he pays,” Mareske said.

J.D. Charles

Contributing Writer

J.D. Charles is a freelance writer and a former reporter for The Logan Banner.

J.D. Charles is a freelance writer and a former reporter for The Logan Banner.

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