White retiring as Elkins police chief

Elkins City Council voted Thursday to approve the retirement of Police Chief H.R. White, effective Oct. 7.

White, who was not present at the meeting, wrote in a letter to Mayor Van Broughton that he wanted to thank the mayor “and the leaders of our city (both past and present) for the opportunity to serve the people of Elkins.”

“I have been extremely proud to wear the uniform of my department and in the end lead the men that are entrusted with the safety and protection of the public,” White wrote. “It has been my honor!”

Broughton said council would soon begin the process of choosing a new chief.

“I have talked to several council people and they would like to start the search for his replacement,” Broughton said.

White began his career with the Elkins Police Department in October 1988. He was appointed chief of the department in June 2010.

Also during Thursday’s meeting:

– City Council voted unanimously to approve entering into an agreement with the state Department of Transportation and the state Division of Highways for a crosswalk safety project.

The project, which will receive federal funding, is designed to improve pedestrian and bicycle safety. The city will be responsible for providing 20 percent of the funding for the $144,900 project.

Warning signs and faux-brick crosswalks will be installed at six intersections in town, and five bicycle racks will be placed downtown. Sidewalk curb cuts with truncated domes also will be installed at the crosswalks.

“We’re hoping to go to construction next summer,” Operations Manager Bob Pingley said.

Councilman Bob Woolwine said he supported the project, but he feels the city has more pressing needs.

“Our infrastructure is falling apart, but our crosswalks look really good,” Woolwine said.

– Council voted unanimously to re-appoint Treasurer Lisa Daniels-Smith for a term of two years at a salary of $60,000 a year.

“I’d like to say she’s done an outstanding, great job for the city,” Broughton said.

– Council approved the promotions of the Elkins Police Department’s Cpl. C.D. Cross to sergeant, and Patrolman R.W. Belt to corporal.

The next Elkins City Council meeting will be Sept. 19 at 7 p.m. at City Hall.