The selection of a mayor has not yet been decided for the Town of Rainelle.
During the regular meeting of the council on Monday, Nov. 23, council members held an executive session to discuss personnel issues, but returned from the session only to adjourn the meeting. Current Town Recorder Bill Bell will continue to serve as acting mayor until a final decision can be made.
Jason R. Smith, former mayor, submitted his resignation last month in a letter addressed to the citizens of Rainelle, the town recorder, and the council members.
In his letter, he stated that “For the past 16 months, I wish I could say it has been an honor to serve the very community I was raised in. However, I feel that I can no longer subject myself and my family to the continued ridicule from those who are solely looking to benefit themselves and not the community.”
His entire resignation letter can be found on the Town of Rainelle Police Department Facebook page.
In other Rainelle news, council members are working to build a visitor’s center that was part of a project revealed by former mayor Andrea Pendleton in 2018.
According to council member Danny Milam, the price of building construction has risen since the idea was first introduced, but he added that the council should continue to go forward with a plan to see the construction completed.
The current proposed construction site on the corner of Route 60 and Ohio Avenue is located in a high risk area due to flooding concerns, Milam continued. However, he added that the council should look into purchasing the site of the old Rich gas station.
“I think it would be a great idea to put it there,” Milam said of the visitors center.
A decision should be made soon, Milam added, since some of the original donors for the project are asking for their money back if the visitors center is not completed. The town has an estimated $180,000 in an account designed for construction of the building.
Milam also stressed the importance for citizens to volunteer to help rebuild Rainelle.
He stated that the Rainelle Planning Commission will meet at 7 p.m. on Dec. 3 at Rainelle Town Hall, and he encouraged everyone to attend.
“We are looking at a lot of good things going to happen,” Milam said. “It’s going to be up to the people of the town to make this happen.”
The council also voted to rekey all of the doors at town hall.
Council meetings are currently being streamed on the Town of Rainelle Facebook page due to COVID-19.