OPINION

BITS & PIECES: Metcalf seems a good choice for Keyser Council

Mineral Daily News-Tribune
Liz Beavers

By Liz Beavers

Tribune Managing Editor

Judging by what he had to say at the beginning of his first meeting Wednesday, Ron Metcalf would seem to be a good choice for the long-awaited appointment to the fifth seat on the Keyser City Council.

Although I only just met him two weeks ago when he took his oath of office, my first impression was a positive one and I truly hope he makes good on his pledge to: 1. Listen to the people, and 2. Work with the council as a team.

I would caution, however, that the concept of teamwork is not to be confused with a “good old boy network” where everybody gets along because they all publicly agree on everything and want the world to think everything is hunky-dory.

I truthfully don’t think that will be the case with Mr. Metcalf, however, and I think he and council member Billy Meek, who has proven himself as someone who is not afraid to speak up, will help to keep the council grounded as they tackle the issues before them.

I guess only time will tell …

Here are some other bits and pieces for you:

 - Council member Jim Hannas announced Wednesday that Keyser will continue to waive late fees on water bills for another month, but will shut water service off for non-payment of the bill.

I offer a “good job” to them for continuing to recognize there are still folks out there financially hurting from the pandemic and yes, from the mill closure.

 - Mayor Damon Tillman appointed new council member Ron Metcalf as the city’s parks and recreation commissioner. The appointment was not on Wednesday’s agenda, however, so the council will have to wait until the March 24 meeting to vote and make it official.

 - The Mineral County Commission approved a bid of $9,136 for a storage shed for the county clerk’s office. Clerk Lauren Ellifritz had told the council in a previous meeting that she was completely out of space for storage in her office.

Commissioner Jerry Whisner made the motion to accept the bid and Roger Leatherman seconded it.

 - The Mineral County Commission approved the request to hold the National Day of Prayer event on the courthouse lawn on Thursday, May 6. Roger Leatherman made that motion, seconded by Whisner.

 - The commissioners are looking at prices for a new phone system for the courthouse complex. The current, aging system keeps dropping calls and creating log jams during busy times.

 - After meeting in executive session for approximately 10 minutes, the commissioners agreed to give Office of Emergency Management director Luke McKenzie permission to hire one employee.

Commission president Richard Lechliter said McKenzie had asked for two new employees, but “we will go with one right now” and maybe hire the second one in a couple months.

 - The commissioners will be seeking bids for the construction of restrooms at Larenim Park near the amphitheater.

In the past, groups hosting events at the outdoor theater have had to rent port-potties for their patrons.

Liz Beavers is the managing editor of the News Tribune and can be reached at lbeavers@newstribune.info.