City Hall facing new problems

There are problems in Elkins at our City Hall. There is no utopia in our wonderful, small city.

We have a mayor with presumably no authority whose only response I have ever heard is “I’ll talk to Bob Pingley, city operations manager.”

We, apparently, have a city council who will not challenge or contest anything Mr. Pingley decides. Recently, it was quoted that bids were not needed for a large expenditure to an engineering group. It was questioned why the expenditure was not put out to bid and Mr. Pingley said it did not have to be put out to bid. Well, I say, if it will save the city and taxpayers money it should be put to bid.

Recently, our mayor moved a table to the outside to speak to constituents — to what avail if nothing gets accomplished?

I attended a city council meeting during the discussions of an additional 1 percent sales tax imposed on our city businesses. With the exception of about two city council members, our council turned a deaf ear to the wishes of our small businesses and passed the increase against the will of these business owners.

In another recent article in The Inter Mountain, City Hall has stated plans to renovate and spend $1 million. Since our merchants, to my knowledge, were never told what their 1 percent sales tax was to be used for, it leads one to wonder if the question has just been answered.

Our home is approximately a four-minute drive from City Hall. I have requested several times that we have a patrol car circle our block, if as nothing more than a deterrent against malicious activity.

A couple of years ago our storage building and garage were entered in the middle of the night, where we lost approximately $1,000 worth of property. Shortly thereafter, the same attempt was made at our storage building and our neighbor’s building. Thanks to our dog we were awakened and able to drive the perpetrators away. Another neighbor’s building has been entered on several occasions with items stolen in the night. The patrol of our area has never happened in a consistent manner.

Our street, and I stress it is not an alley, is graveled. We have lived on this street for approximately 40 years. In the past our street was graveled each year in the spring and fall. We now, over the past several years, have to ask, beg and then argue to get it graveled one time. This year our neighbor was told it was not in the budget to gravel this street.

For a period of time, we had tree branches and yard waste picked up by the city. Then the service was stopped. Mr. Pingley explained that the city could not afford to do that. These are services the residents deserve.

The administration is facing concerns of pay raise disparities, of dilapidated housing, crime and drugs. To the voters in Randolph County and Elkins I believe it is time to put the power of voting for what it is meant for, which is to vote out those at City Hall, be it the mayor, your city council person and, yes, even bring to task our city operations manager. Remember, your vote is the only way to solve this crisis.

Jerry W. Trimboli