MADISON — Concerns regarding event parking around the perimeter of the Madison Civic Center were heard by the Madison City Council, and an update on audits of city records was discussed on Nov. 4 at the city’s regular session.
Kathy Bias, a resident of the neighborhood surrounding the facility, expressed her frustrations regarding parking in the open meeting.
“I’ve lived here for 10 years this coming Thanksgiving,” she said. “I like the services that the civic center provides and the revenue that it brings in, but parking for the residents on Third Street is horrible when we have an event here. Now it is time for basketball season and I’ll drive around for 15 or 20 minutes looking for a place to park.”
Bias expressed that sometimes residents can’t access their own driveways.
She also noted West Virginia code regarding parking near fire hydrants.
“It states that you will park 15-plus feet away,” she said. “If my house is on fire and the fire department can’t get to the fire hydrants, this is a problem. Parking is getting worse every year at basketball season.”
Councilman Artie Barker made a motion for the city to purchase signs for both sides of the street that would indicate that violators will be fined.
Councilman PJ Johnson, who lives in the neighborhood, said the situation would then be an issue on a neighboring street.
“The one issue with that is you are going to just move that problem (and) it will just go somewhere else,” he said. “It does need to happen. My street is wider and this is just going to move to my street and that is fine.”
The county discussed options for providing additional parking around the Madison Civic Center through applying gravel to a lot that the landowners had previously given permission to use. The city would have to provide proper drainage and adhere to instructions to keep the parking in a designated area.
With a cemetery nestled adjacent to the lot in question, council discussed what the proper procedure would be if they were to use the lot for parking.
The council passed a motion to purchase signs and monitor violators who block fire hydrants around the facility.
UPDATE: The City of Madison will pay an independent auditor for an audit of city records. Lisa Thornburg will be paid $17,000 for services related to the audit. The West Virginia State Auditor’s Office is also conducting an audit into City of Madison records that has yet to be completed. In a previous story, the CVN reported that city officials stated that the city will release the results of their audit to the public once it is completed.
The City of Madison will meet again on Dec. 2 at Madison City Hall in Council Chambers at 7 p.m.
Reporter Phil Perry can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 304-307-2401.