KEYSER - The Keyser mayor and council are taking steps to address two different situations which have kept social media buzzing for quite some time - lack of emergency access to the North End of town and lack of places to recycle paper or cardboard in the city.

By Liz Beavers
lbeavers@newstribune.info
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - The Keyser mayor and council are taking steps to address two different situations which have kept social media buzzing for quite some time - lack of emergency access to the North End of town and lack of places to recycle paper or cardboard in the city.
Mayor Damon Tillman announced last week that he had received at least 15 text messages on Thursday complaining about a train which had been sitting on the tracks earlier that day, blocking off both crossings into the North End.
The lack of emergency access to the North End was an issue pushed by former council member Karol Ashenfelter even before she took office, but she was never able to find a solution to the problem.
Thursday, Tillman said instead of calling CSX about the problem, which Ashenfelter had done “to no avail,” he called the Department of Homeland Security.
“She listened to everything I had to say, and she is speaking directly with the director about it,” he said.
It is Tillman’s hope that the director of Homeland Security will call CSX and put some pressure on him to work on the problem.
Prior to the construction of the present Memorial Bridge, there were steps leading from the North End up to the old Memorial Bridge if evacuation ever became necessary.
Ashenfelter and many others have pointed out, however, that steps would not be of use if a firetruck or ambulance needed to get into the North End when the crossings were blocked.
In regard to the lack of recycling bins, former city administrator Randy Amtower had announced several months ago that the city would no longer have the bins out beside the swimming pool because the trash collection company - under new ownership - was now charging for the service.
Amtower therefore began talking with Jack Amoroso at Lumber & Things and he had agreed to place a bin in the parking lot beside City Hall.
Last week, Tillman said the city is still working on getting the bins, but they are looking for a better place to put them.
“They don’t want to put them just anywhere, because people were putting trash in them,” he said.
“I had a call from some school teachers,” he continued, explaining that they would like to have the bins out next to Keyser Middle School.
“I’m waiting to hear back from them,” he said.
Tillman said he and the council felt the parking lot between City Hall and Memorial Bridge wasn’t an ideal location because it is so visible to people driving in and out of town.
“Your first impression is your best impression,” he said.
“We want to build a bigger, better, stronger city, but we also want a beautiful city.”