Government, Westover Council

Westover City Council vote on 401K match increase; update on police annex

WESTOVER — City Council voted this week to increase its match to employees’ 401K accounts.

The increase would benefit a few city employees who currently receive a
6% match from the city. The increase will be 2.5%.

The intention is to match the police pension match, which is at 8.5%. Outside of the police, there are only five city employees participating in the 401K program.

First Ward council member Ralph Mullins was shocked to learn so few employees participate.

“They’re crazy not to participate in that,” Mullins said.

Council is also approaching an election on June 9. Early voting will be May 27 through June 6.

Incumbents Edie Viola and Steve Andryzcik are running for their at-large positions. Third Ward council member Gary Weber will also be on the ballot. Weber was appointed to his seat and he must now be elected.

There is a third at-large seat open but no one has filed to run for it.

Mayor Dave Johnson, who is required to run every two years, is due to run again this year as well.

Council will appoint someone to the third at-large seat if no one decides to run, according to Johnson.

“If [no one runs] we’ll wait until after the first of the year and appoint somebody the first of July,” Johnson said.

Clerk Sandie Weis said plans are to limit the polling areas to the city hall building, instead of having a location for each ward. With early voting, Weis said she “doesn’t see a need” for three voting locations as the “turnout is usually not that great.”

Council also heard Monday about work on the police annex, which is said to be well underway. The annex is projected to be finished by the first or second week of March, according to Johnson.

The flooring still needs to be installed, but drywall is complete as is the plumbing for the kitchen and the bathroom. The budget for the project was estimated at $100,000.

In other council news:

Westover donated $1,000 to Mountaineer Spay Neuter Assistance Program (M-SNAP), which Johnson said council has been supporting since 2017

Public Works is looking to replace the lights near and around the Westover bridge after determining the DOH is not responsible for them.

The police chief reported that there were 121 traffic stops and 85 violations in the past two weeks.

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