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Cov. City Council Holds Brief, But Productive Session
Jan. 12th Meeting Reapproved Amended Resolution On School Consolidation

Covington, VA (Jan. 12, 2021) - The Covington City Council held about a half hour meeting this evening (Tues., Jan. 12, 2021). Here's a brief summary of its action:

• heard Covington City Manager Krystal Onaitis give a thorough report on various grants the city is dealing with including the Main St. grant and Jackson St. grant as well as her efforts to work towards getting the Rayon Bridge repair funding in order.

• Onaitis noted progress on a concept with Alleghany County to get joint services funding in agreement. Onaitis also mentioned that work on a "pad ready site" concept continued with the Alleghany Highlands Economic Development Corp.

• heard that the Highlands Covid-19 Task Force had issued a thorough update via a news release to the public today

• heard that the Lewis-Gale ICU unit had opened on January 4th

• briefly discussed holidays with the city manager asking each council member to email her with their suggestions on how the issue might best be handled

• had some discussion on a rent relief concept, noting that property owners need to apply for funding. Right now, however, this concept only applies to far larger metropolitan areas. It was suggested that a regional approach with a letter to state officials might be more effective to get smaller jurisdictions considered

• council unanimously approved an appropriation resolution regarding DARE contributions to the Cov. Police Dept. in the amount of $250.

• council unanimously approved an appropriation resolution regarding Shop with a Cop contributions to the Cov. Police Department in the amount of $2,000

• • council unanimously approved a resolution regarding CARES Act funding for utility customer relief in the amount of $21,747.76

• by a vote of 4-1 (Councilman Carson voting NO) approved the amending of a resolution authorizing the consolidation of Alleghany County and City of Covington School Districts (minor wording change).

• council unanimously approved a resolution authorizing the city manager to revise and adopt personnel policies under certain conditions. (Changes could be made with council having seven days to change any such move)

• council unanimously approved a proposed ordinance regarding Amendment 2 to the Workforce Investment Area II Chief Local Officials (CLEO) Charter Agreement.

At the end of the meeting, a few additional notes:

- council will hold a session with the Planning Commission next Tuesday, beginning at 4:30 p.m. to deal with an application for a special use permit. It will then hold a called meeting to deal with the result of that meeting.

- council will meet on Jan. 26th at 5:30 p.m. to deal with a proposed charter change.

Mayor Tom Sibold remarked that he hoped the % of positive Covid-19 cases would drop so council could return to regular public sessions. He urged those who were supposed to quarantine to do so and for other to use marks and respect social distancing suggestions.

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