Kent receives award for municipal water

Michelle Poje

The Winter Olympics may be over, but that’s not the only event to hand out prized medals, Kent City Manager Dave Ruller said at last night’s city council meeting.

The meeting started out on a light note when, in his city report, Ruller announced that Kent received a silver medal for best municipal water on Feb. 25 at the annual Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting Awards.

The event, held in Berkeley Springs, W.Va., is the world’s largest water-tasting competition, bringing in more than 100 waters from across the globe. In 2004, Kent won the bronze medal in the same category.

“I suggest we start selling our water now to solve some of our financial problems,” Ruller said with a laugh.

Following the announcement, two main issues were discussed briefly by council members during standing committee reports.

Rick Hawksley motioned for discussion to schedule a committee time for policy procedures regarding relationships among the council. Hawksley said he feels the council needs to start working better together.

“It’s not always clear what we want as a council,” Hawksley said.

Hawksley also motioned for discussion regarding the issue of zoning codes and how council can handle citizen complaints.

“We end up being caught in the middle between citizens and staff,” Hawksley said. He noted that council should handle citizen complaints by “helping them understand how these things are being done.”

Edward Bargerstock said he receives many phone complaints from citizens regarding zoning issues.

“In one instance, there was a rental property predating zoning code, and the neighbor wanted to shut it down,” Bargerstock said. He said the council needs to figure out how to deal with citizen complaints in a friendly manner.

The next city council meeting will be held at 7:30 p.m. March 16.

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