By: Jennifer Dearborn
The city of Thomas met in regular session under the direction of Mayor Jody Flanagan. Previous Mayor Kim Johnson stepped down from her position, as she has started a new job that requires more of her time.
The financial troubles that have burdened the city resulted in numerous fines and penalties from the IRS and State of West Virginia. The council is working to pay off $187,000 worth of fines and penalties incurred from 2016-2020. This was just brought to the council’s attention in January 2021. The council recently paid the DEP $48,000 from 2016 fines.
After being shut down by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Zayo Group Right of Way has resumed construction as of Monday September 13, 2021. The town is still waiting on the finalized Brownsfield Grant report.
As with the Town of Davis, Thomas is having similar issues with payments for the hotel/motel tax collection on personal rentals (airbnb, vrbo, etc). The council will implement a plan to make sure the hotel/motel taxes are up to date and that the monies are sent to the Tucker County CVB as allocated.
It was on the agenda to discuss commercial garbage rates but this was tabled until the next meeting. Mayor Flanagan also gave a financial report that was given to him from the Thomas Community Center. The council asked that Thomas Community Center President Brian Zirk be present at the next council meeting. The council would like to be more involved with the community center and its board.
Hanna Tierney was before the council again about the property adjacent to hers on Brown Street. The owners had started demolition but the project was shut down just three weeks in by the DEP and State Health Department due to suspicion of asbestos. Mayor Flanagan has been in contact with the property owners and they are working as quickly as possible to get this project finished. Council decided if it doesn’t move along in a timely fashion then they will revisit this at a future meeting.
The next regular council meeting will be Tuesday October 12, 2021 at 6:30 p.m. at the Thomas City Hall.