The cancellation of the Shanghai Parade, rezoning ordinances, Route 60 sidewalks, and more were considered by the Lewisburg City Council on Tuesday, December 21.
Four ordinances dealing with rezoning were approved after a second reading and public hearings.
This includes 0.53 acres at 1329 Jefferson St. North owned by Janey Kortas (Ordinance 296), 0.53 acres at 1347 Jefferson Street North owned by Brian G. Richards (Ordinance 297), and 0.26 acres at 1315 Jefferson Street North owned by Rogers Holdings LLC and James P. Wrzosek, and Weikle/Brachenrich rezoning located on tax map 15, parcel 118.
Each ordinance takes the properties from R-1, town residential zoning, to O-R, office residential zoning.
Speaking on the Roger Holdings rezoning, Adam Rogers explained “that would be my property. I [have] an investment company that originated here through one of our local banks. The bank has sold that to me now. I handle about $100 million worth of assets and I’m hoping to put it inside that building, keep it here. I’ve got clients that live in 14 different states and they do come to Lewisburg. These are high network clients that are spending money here. … We are growing. I’m established here in the area – I live in Union. I’ve been here six or seven years now in the Lewisburg bank. Those are my intentions and those are my goals.”
Speaking on the Brachenrich rezoning, one visitor to council explained “I’m J.D. Brachenrich, I’ve owned that property since, well I’m not sure, I believe since the early 80s. … At one time I had an architectural sketch for a multi-unit housing building there. I have not done a thing with it. … Thank you for your consideration.”
Discussions and votes around these zoning changes have been ongoing for several months. After all the votes and public hearings on Tuesday, the room celebrated with a round of applause, with Mayor Beverly White saying “it’s done!”
In other business:
– Lewisburg is getting a Starbucks! For more on that, see “Starbucks Coming To Lewisburg” in The West Virginia Daily News.
– A resolution was passed concerning a Department of Transportation grant. According to the resolution, the “City of Lewisburg has applied to the West Virginia Department of Transportation (DOT) … for a $144,097.50 grant [for Route] 60 South Lafayette Sidewalk Improvements. [DOT] has tentatively approved the $115,278.00 grant contingent upon [Lewisburg] executing the Agreement , … the 20% match by the City of Lewisburg is $28,819.50, … and Lewisburg City Council is of the opinion that it is in the best interest of the citizens of the community for the project to be undertaken and the Agreement to be executed.”
– Previously, on the city of Lewisburg Facebook page, it was announced that “the Shanghai Parade Committee [decided] that the Shanghai Parade has been canceled for (January 1) 2022 because of concerns regarding COVID-19. The Committee is looking forward to holding the parade again next year.” Further in the comments, the post also noted “this is the decision of the Shanghai Parade Committee and not the City.” This is the second year the parade has been canceled amid a spike in COVID-19 cases.
– The Lewisburg Volunteer of the Year, typically announced at the Shanghai Parade, was discussed by White. “We normally go into executive session to discuss it, but I felt that the COVID-19 Task Force, because they were it last year, should receive that honor this year, because we’re still fighting COVID.”
– Jamie Cosier and Sam Argabright were reappointed to the Board of Zoning Appeals and Ryan King, a representative of the ASCEND West Virginia program, was appointed to the Parks Commission.
– The Lewisburg Fire Department report for November explained that, of the 101 calls in November, 62 calls were inside the city limits, 27 calls were in our first due area outside the city limits, seven calls were automatic mutual aid calls to Fairlea Fire, and five calls were requested mutual aid calls. This included one structure fire, two vehicle fires, one bruch fire, 13 motor vehicle accidents, 51 medical calls, one animal rescue, one illegal burn, two smoke scares, and other calls.
– City Manager Misty Hill spoke to the CARES Act reimbursement projects status. “We’ve been working diligently trying to get the CARES Act reimbursement completed for the end of the year. The only thing that we have left that isn’t … completed is the fencing for the pickleball court in the skate park. [It has been invoiced before the year-end cut off]. We decided that the fencing was too weathered to put back up, so we had to purchase new fencing and that’s been ordered. … The old platform has been taken down, the softball and ADA bathroom have been completed. The baseball field was definitely finished. The football [field] is completed also. … There’s going to be a couple [of walking lights] in the wintertime that are out. It’s due to the way that it faces the sun, they can’t get charged. … The skatepark lights are up and they are in use. They are very excited about that. By the way, I did get a text message from one of the parents stating that the kids were already on the court and skating away. … We’re hoping that we have enough that we can renovate the two bathrooms at Dorie Miller. Those look pretty rough on the inside. So we’re hoping that we can give them a new face. … it looks like with the outside of city hall that we are coming to an end. It’s beautiful.”