Infrastructure continues to be focus of Ripley City Council

Suzette Lowe
Special to the Jackson Star News

Infrastructure needs were addressed at the April 20 Ripley City Council.

Viking Lane has long suffered from a storm drain issue which causes some serious problems for residents of that street.

Thrasher Group representative Eleni Brick addressed council members Carolyn Waybright, John McGinley, Rick Buckley, Bryan Thompson, Danny Snyder and Recorder David Casto regarding the scope of the problem. A replacement design for a new storm drain from Viking Lane to Mill Creek was discussed. Thrasher Engineering will compete the design. Estimated cost for completion is $540,000. Discussion will continue at future meetings.

Representatives from Broken Chains addiction recovery program shared their goals. The group, which had also spoken to the Ravenswood City Council, said a residence would serve 6-15 males. The goal is to find property or a building suitable for the purpose. With guidance from the Fletcher Group, which oversees a successful program in Kentucky, along with the West Virginia Alliance for Recovery, board member Connie Dunlap said she has hope that this proposed Level 2 residence would answer a lot of needs.

After the meeting, Councilwoman Carolyn Waybright, referring to the presentation of three recovering addicts, said, “Their story really touched my heart. We need help with the drug problem in Jackson County. This may be one way to do that.”

The sidewalk leading to Walmart will hopefully move forward.

City attorney Kevin Harris said that Titan Propane has received everything needed regarding the project.

“They are currently reviewing it,” Harris said. “Hopefully, we’ll hear from them soon and we can take the next step.”

After an hour and three-minute closed-door executive session to consider personnel matters, council resumed its regular session. At that time, approval was given to move Branson Amos from part-time to full-time employment at an hourly rate of $13. The salary of chief water operator, Jim MItchum, was raised to $28 an hour, an increase of $3.44 per hour.

In other business, council:

  • Approved the levy order and rate sheet as required by state auditor.
  • Learned that hydrant flushing is ongoing in Evans and Ripley.
  • Approved a budget revision in the amount of $500,000 to the general fund.
  • Authorized Mayor Rader to sign the lease purchase agreement for a new garbage truck.
  • Learned that the 2020 Miss Ripley 4th of July, Courtney Winter, will continue in that role for 2021.

The next meeting will be Tuesday, May 4, at 7 p.m. at the municipal building.