At this week’s meeting, the Morgantown City Council discussed and unanimously passed the 2015-2016 annual budget, as well as a runway extension for the Morgantown Municipal Airport.
The budget discussion was highlighted by a back-and-forth between Councilor Ron Bane and City Manager Jeff Mikorski the city police’s budget for the next year.
Bane asked whether or not a budget increase for the police department entailed more staffing. Mirkorski said that currently, the budget will go to paying current police officers overtime.
“We have plenty of time to look at the stability of the budget throughout another quarter, and to make recommendations on long-term strategies to increase the police and fire department,” Mikorski said.
Bane also expressed concern that sending city police and fire department to WVU events may take away emergency services from more needed areas.
Despite the concerns, the annual budget was unanimously passed 7-0.
The council then unanimously passed a slight increase in the Coal Severance Fund.
Other discussed items included the development of a runway extension at the Morgantown Municipal Airport. The city would offer $1.2 million for the extension on the runway, although the money provided could be reimbursed to the FAA. The runway’s dimensions are scheduled to be 95 acres by 13 acres.
The runway extension was passed unanimously.
The City Council unanimously approved of an ordinance that would annex property in Morgantown’s Union and Grant districts next to the airport into the city’s corporate boundaries.
“This is just a great thing that’s happening to the city of Morgantown to include these properties in our municipal boundaries,” Councilor Nancy Ganz said. “I really appreciate the people who are… going to work together to make for the best airport situation and the best business situation.”
The City Council also voted on an agreement with the Monongalia County Board of Education that would provide a prevention resources officer to be posted at Morgantown High School. Councilor Jennifer Selin noted that this was a great idea.
The consideration was passed 7-0.
Ordinances authorizing right-of-way and ease agreements over property located both at 10 Maple Avenue and on Hough Street were passed unanimously.
The council also spread former Councilor Mike Fike’s past commissions to current members.
The meeting ended with a private executive session which considered employee evaluations for City Manager and City Clerk.
The Morgantown City Council meets every first and third Tuesday of the month at the City Council Chambers, 389 Spruce Street at 7 p.m. The next meeting will take place on August 4, while the Committee of the Whole will meet next Tuesday, July 28.