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Parkersburg City Council approves B&O exemption, reinstates in-person forum

PARKERSBURG – Parkersburg City Council voted this evening to approve a $500 business and occupation tax exemption for the fourth quarter.

The final reading of the ordinance passed 8-0, with Councilman J.R. Carpenter recusing himself because he owns a restaurant downtown. Proposed to assist business as they recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, the exemption will apply to restaurants, retail establishments, service businesses and those renting or leasing real property.

All nine council members, Mayor Tom Joyce and City Clerk Connie Shaffer were in council chambers for the meeting, which was streamed live on Facebook.

The in-person public forum was suspended based on a council vote last month to do so as long as West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice’s state of emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic remains in effect. But council voted unanimously to reinstate it for the next meeting, on June 23, after listening to multiple emailed statements from area residents opposing the temporary suspension.

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