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St. Albans Mayor Callaway exhorts citizens involved with government

By Bridget May

St. Albans Mayor Dick Callaway proclaimed this Municipal Government Week and urged increased community involvement in local government.

"Local government offers citizens the best opportunity to be heard and to influence the course of their community," Callaway said.

The mayor awarded plaques to local youths and some adults who have already taken initiative in the local government by participating in Teen Court, which is organized to address issues with young offenders.

Teen courts previously operated on the county level only, but as part of the drug task force, the city of St. Albans approached the state Legislature to have to law changed.

St. Albans has the first Teen Court in the state to be administered on a local level.

The court is presided over by a judge or attorney; however, the prosecutors, defense attorneys and juries are comprised of other youths who determine the punishment of their peers who breech the law.

Teens mete out the punishments for offenses that include smoking, selling marijuana and traffic violations.

"It's really just a great experience about the law," said one participant, Emily Stricklen.

In addition to Stricklen, Callaway awarded plaques to Haley Sapp, Rachell

Riddle, Emily Lovejoy, Lori Peters, Crystal Walden, Chris McClung and Cathy Henderson.

In other business, House of Delegates members Doug Skaff and Eric Nelson made an appearance at the meeting.

They presented Mayor Callaway and the city a certificate awarding the city $20,000 to make repairs and improvements to Skinner Drive.

Skaff said he was pleased to present the certificate.

"It's an honor," Skaff said.

The council also adopted a resolution authorizing Callaway to submit an application to the West Virginia development office, requesting an additional $15,000 to complete repairs to Skinner Drive, which is an orphan road.

The city also gained a new police officer. Jeffrey Lucas was sworn in by Mayor Callaway. His mother was given the honor of pinning him with his badge.

After passing the psychological examination, Lucas will move on to the State Police Academy.

City Council also placed restrictions on who can post information on the city's social media sites. The change also prohibits the posting of names and other information on social media sites, respectively.


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