KEYSER - With one member absent, the Keyser City Council voted unanimously Wednesday to contract with a grant writer to help find funds for various city projects.

By Liz Beavers
lbeavers@newstribune.info
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - With one member absent, the Keyser City Council voted unanimously Wednesday to contract with a grant writer to help find funds for various city projects.
Mayor Damon Tillman had brought up the idea at the council’s Sept. 12 meeting, saying that the grant writer would be responsible for researching, writing and administering grants for the city.
Council member Terry Liller asked that the issue be tabled until this week’s meeting, however, so the person being considered could attend the meeting and answer any questions the officials might have.
Wednesday, David Smarik was indeed present, and told the officials, “There’s ample  money available to small communities and towns … but you have to do a lot of work to get it.”
“This is something we haven’t had in the city and we’ve needed it for quite some time,” Tillman said.
The officials tossed around various ideas that grant funding could be used for, including the police department, a new City Hall, and a new swimming pool or year-round recreational facility.
And while Tillman told Smarik they would give him a “wish list,” he admitted that the city would have to prioritize its needs because “we need a lot of things.”
Council member William Zacot made the motion to contract with Smarik and Jennifer Junkins seconded it.
With council member Eric Murphy absent, the motion passed 4-0.
Although no pay figure was confirmed Wednesday, the council had mentioned $25 an hour “with a negotiated flat rate” during the Sept. 12 meeting.