Update: City Council Overrides Mayor's Veto

By: Todd Baucher, Mollie Lair Email
By: Todd Baucher, Mollie Lair Email

UPDATE: 3/27/12 11:09 PM

Parkersburg City Mayor Bob Newell vetoed the 2012-2013 budget.
He wanted to eliminate the flood wall fee, but city council voted to override that veto.

Only city council can institute or eliminate fees. Mayor Newell says he is disappointed in their decision to keep the fee.

"Of course I'm disappointed. You know only city council can raise revenues, fee, institute fees, and only city council can eliminate fees. All I can do is give them guidance. And you know I promised the people of Parkersburg when council passed the user fee that I would do what I could as the economy improved to eliminate those fees and that was my first attempt at doing away with one of the fees so I was certainly disappointed that council didn't eliminate the flood wall fee," says Mayor Newell.

The motion to override Mayor Newell's veto passed by a vote of 7 to 2.
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Update 3/16/2012 9:00 P.M.

Parkersburg Mayor Bob Newell has officially vetoed the 2012-2013 spending plan approved this week by city council.

The mayor repeated what he told WTAP Wednesday; that the approved budget does not include eliminating the floodwall fee.
The fee is among those he promised to cut last year...after city council approved implementing a user fee.

He added, however, the veto doesn't mean the mayor and council can't work together.

"Someone makes a motion to override, someone seconds, and they either vote it up or down," he said. "It's not a long drawn-out process. Even if I'm successful in overriding it, the budget goes in the next day. There's nothing held up over this."

Council approved the budget Tuesday night with a six-to-two vote.
It needs six votes to override the mayor's veto.

Parkersburg Mayor Bob Newell says he will veto a budget city council passed Tuesday night for the 2012-2013 budget year.

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The budget council passed is the same spending plan approved by council earlier this month, acting as the commitee of the whole, which kept in the floodwall fee the mayor had reccommended eliminating in his budget message last month.

Newell maintains council can still enact a budget providing for city employee pay raises, while eliminating the floodwall fee, which the mayor says "unfairly targets part of the city's population", including both residences and businesses in the city floodwall zone.

He says reducing the storm water line item by $500,000 would provide funding for pay raises.

Newell plans to call a special meeting of council to try to work out differences between the mayor's office and council members.

The budget is due in Charleston by the end of the month.


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