Mayor & council meet Capito rep
Christopher Strovel, the Eastern Panhandle representative for Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito, came to Bath Town Hall on August 21 to introduce himself to town officials.
Strovel's purpose was to listen to and discuss Town of Bath issues.
Mayor Susan Webster asked Strovel about the U.S. Department of Agriculture loan that the Morgan County Commissioners are trying to get to help fund the new courthouse. She wanted to know if loans of this type are available to municipalities for new municipal centers.
Webster also asked Strovel to check on the status of the CSX Railroad lot behind the train depot. The county commissioners are seeking a Small Cities Block Grant to help with a proposal for a 50-unit senior apartment complex and a new senior center.
Webster is interested in the possibility of including a new municipal center in the project if funding becomes available.
Councilman David Crosby wanted Strovel to find out what the state is doing with funds provided by the Department of Homeland Security. He pointed out that Morgan County is "only a gas tank away" from Washington and Baltimore, and Berkeley Springs Water Works is the only major water plant in the county.
Webster said the whole Eastern Panhandle is in the path of any evacuation if an event occurred in Washington or Baltimore that could bring 200,000 to 300,000 people to the area.
Webster felt the town would need another water storage tank that would hold one million gallons to be able to handle the estimated influx of people from a disaster in the Washington-Baltimore area.
One Homeland Security requirement is that water tanks must be fenced in with 8-ft. chain link fencing with razor wire on top. So far no money has been forthcoming from the state, said Town Recorder Garnet Marsh.
Strovel asked council how many water customers were on the town's water system now and was told 1,600.
Webster asked if any federal grant money was available for items such as a new garbage truck for town or to help fund town police projects.
Strovel said there are two thick file folders in his office with federal grant information and that he would go back and research all the town's requests and report back.