Residents affected by stormwater seek help

KINGWOOD — Residents of the Rodeheaver Addition section came to council this week for help with city storm sewers allowing water to run onto their property.

They learned that their street isn’t owned by the city, but after much discussion, were promised that the city supervisor would look at the storm water situation.

“What do we need to do to progress forward?” Justin Haymond asked council a couple times Tuesday. Haymond said he owns property in the Frank, Cord and Von Street area, originally known as the Rodeheaver Farm Addition.

Haymond said he wants to build two homes on the property, but that land and 13 homes already in the area are being affected by storm water from Joy Street. There are storm water drains on both sides of Joy, but the water is running instead onto residents’ property, he said.

Records at the assessor’s office show Cord, Frank and Von are city streets, Haymond said. But city attorney Sheila Williams said the assessor couldn’t automatically say the streets are the city’s when the property was subdivided in 1972.

A city ordinance passed in the early 1980s requires roads to be brought up to city standards and dedicated by deed to the city. Cord and Frank have never been dedicated or accepted by the city, Williams said.

Councilman Josh Fields said he walked the property last weekend and asked that the city supervisor look at the storm water runoff problem. The grade from Joy Street is already steep, and it is scheduled for repaving this year, which could make the runoff problem worse.

“I think we’ve been a little rough with [Haymond],” Fields said. “I feel like we need to listen to our residents’ concerns.”

Councilman Dick Shaffer said the city supervisor should look at the situation and make a recommendation before any paving on Joy. Other council members agreed.

Also at Tuesday’s meeting:

Council approved closing Price Street 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday for the Preston County bicentennial celebration.

Endorsed Main Street Kingwood’s application to the Cultivate West Virginia program. As part of that, MSK identified three problems in town: Dilapidated buildings, lack of variety of businesses downtown and no year round opportunities for young people. Councilwoman Michelle Whetsell agreed to serve as a “community champion” with the program.

Endorsed Friends of the Cheat’s (FOC) application for a $3 million grant to build an 8.5-mile rail trail along the Cheat. The application includes minigrants and internships to work with towns on cashing in on the trail.

“We can’t just put a trail through the woods and think it’s going to change this county’s economy,” said FOC Director Amanda Pitzer.

accepted a bid for $10,900, to enclose the front desk at city hall to protect workers. There have been instances of irate people almost coming across the counter toward city workers, City Clerk Mary Howell said earlier. The cost will be split by the city, sewer board and water board.

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