CLARKSBURG, W.Va. — After much heated debate, Clarksburg City Council on Monday night revived and passed the first reading of a proposal to enact a 1 percent sales tax.
City council voted 6-1 in favor of Councilman Zeke Lopez’s motions to revive the tabled sales tax ordinance and approve it on first reading. Councilman Ryan Kennedy cast the dissenting votes.
Between those two motions, council debated and voted down Councilman Chad Sigmon’s motion to earmark the revenues solely for police and firefighter pensions and infrastructure improvements.
“In my opinion, I think they are the main priorities as far as uses of the sales tax,” Sigmon told his fellow council members during their rescheduled regular meeting at City Hall.
Kennedy seconded and voted for Sigmon’s amendment to delete economic development activities such as the Robinson Grand Theater project and transfers of any unencumbered funds to the general fund as possible uses for the sales tax revenues.
“If we’re going to have to have a tax, it ought to go to the most important uses,” Kennedy said.
Councilman Gary Bowden also voted for the amendment.
But the majority of council — Lopez, Mayor Cathy Goings, Vice Mayor Jim Malfregeot and Councilman Bob Caplan — felt otherwise…