Roanoke council enhances security at former town hall building

The Roanoke Town Council voted to enhance the security at the former town hall building at its meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 20.

The board signed off on the construction of a foyer in the building, which is located at 126 N. Main St. Town Marshal Jim Wood advocated for the move.

“It’s just an added security measure,” he said. “So, that way, we can control who’s going in and who’s going out.”

In addition to the former town hall space, the building contains the entrances to a rental space, which is occupied by McClure’s Market & Bulk Foods, and an office.

Wood presented council with a quote from Blackburn Construction for $2,400 for the job, which it unanimously approved. The job will be paid for with revenue from the aforementioned rental space.

Councilman Ryan Carroll raised a concern about town-issued credit cards at the meeting, questioning if town employees should be signing for cards that are not in their name. Carroll remarked that he would hate to see that hinder the purchase of an item in an emergency situation for the town.

Clerk-Treasurer JoAnne Kirchner replied that she could not recall an instance in which a town employee had had an issue making a credit card purchase. Additionally, she noted that Town of Roanoke charge accounts have been established at many area stores, which facilitate purchases for the town.

Kirchner also commented that the State Board of Accounts frowns on municipalities issuing several credit cards in the names of individuals. The town currently has three such cards – in the names of Kirchner, Council President Dave Tucker and Superintendent of Operations Phil Hibbert – and Kirchner stated that she did not advise issuing any more cards than that.

In other business:
– Kirchner reviewed the town’s proposed 2020 budget with council. The budget totals $2,202,058, with $658,606 coming from property taxes. A public hearing for the budget will occur during the council meeting on Sept. 17, with budget adoption set for the meeting on Oct. 1.

– Tucker shared that he had been asking citizens if they would be in favor of the town offering curbside recycling via the town’s garbage collector, Republic Services. Tucker stated that roughly 60 percent of the people he had spoken to would be in favor of a recycling program. Council noted that there would be an added fee for this service and that it was waiting on Republic Services to let it know what that fee would total.

– Hibbert reported that fire hydrants in town would start being flushed on Monday, Aug. 26.

– Carroll informed Wood that he had observed several instances of youths riding their bikes in a manner that is disruptive to the flow of traffic. Wood replied that the police department would be on the lookout for such activity and correct the youths’ behavior.