After Parkersburg City Council Finance Committee members on Tuesday refused to endorse a proposal to pay $34,000 toward repair work on the streets of the Wyndemere subdivision, Parkersburg Mayor Bob Newell said he still planned to bring the controversial plan to the full city council at a later date.
The Wyndemere Homeowners Association has requested the city's financial help to repair streets in the subdivision, which were not finished by developers. The subdivision was annexed into the city in 1999, but because of their conditions, not the streets.
Newell has proposed council spend $34,000 to help the Wyndemere Homeowners Association to bring the streets in the subdivision up to municipal code so they will be dedicated as public thoroughfare, which is why the streets were not accepted when the subdivision was annexed in 1999.
That issue is another subject.
The city's $34,000 contribution would be matched by Gregory B. Krivchenia II through his K2 of West Virginia LLC, with the remaining money provided by the homeowners association.
Newell said the issue is a matter of fairness: The subdivision is part of the city, and other subdivisions with similar circumstances have had streets dedicated and repaired.
But the residents of Parkersburg are also asking a question of fairness: What makes the gated community of Wyndemere more deserving of special treatment than other neighborhoods in town.
The residents there, while allowing for one of the two gates to be removed for the city aid in repairing the streets, are refusing to remove the gate on the Vienna side at 12th Street. That blocks a publicly owned street and goes against the grain of every municipal dictum that public property is public property.
Their argument: They don't want the wear and tear of traffic and they worry about children. Well, so does everyone else, but no one can block 25th Street with a gate, no one can block Latrobe Street with a gate and no one can block Market Street with a gate.
"Forget the gate," Parkersburg City Attorney Joe Santer told the committee. " ... It is not a gate issue."
While Santer may be legally correct, he is also wrong. It is exactly a gate issue.