HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- After months of adjustments following a plan that was shot down in January, mainly over opposition to a new fee, Huntington Mayor Steve Williams presented a new plan to council Monday night.
If it's approved, the city would merge the sanitary board and the flood wall and storm water divisions into a new department. That would cut the city's municipal fee by 10 percent.
A $7.15 monthly fee would be implemented for every property owner in Huntington, except those on public assistance, who’d pay about $5 less.
After two years, the fee would change for businesses depending on size.
"I believe what we're bringing to you today is a much more thorough, much more well documented, certainly more efficient operation," Williams told council.
Councilman Rick Simmons spoke out against the plan in January, but he says he's pleased with the changes.
"I felt it wasn't fair to the people of Huntington,” Simmons said after the meeting Monday, “and this one seems to be more thought out and has possible capital improvement coming through. I think he's really thought this out, and it's very fair."
The ordinance will have its second reading in two weeks.
After the plan was met with criticism in January, Williams formed a work group consisting of business leaders and people representing neighborhoods to share input on how to improve it.
"What we're trying to demonstrate to business and industry is they had an active seat at the table along with neighborhood associations, pastors,” Williams told WSAZ.com. “We had everyone seated at the table with me, and we were able to work our way through this."
Click on the link for more on the adjusted plan.