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►  WV Police Officer Suspended After Incident with a Gun

A police officer in West Virginia has been suspended after video surfaced on Facebook showing him holding a gun while arguing with people when he was off duty.

Media outlets report 49-year-old Richard Foster with the Nitro Police Department now faces a misdemeanor brandishing charge. Nitro Police Chief Bobby Eggleton said he placed Foster on administrative leave until further notice and has taken away his gun, police car and law enforcement identification.

A news release from the sheriff’s office said several people were arguing about a mobile home that was being placed on a lot near the road. WOAY posted a video showing a man holding a gun at his side while arguing with another man as several people watch. The man never raises the gun in the video.

►  Mylan among potential targets for annexation into Morgantown

Mylan, Suncrest Town Centre and the Mileground have been identified as potential targets for annexation into the city of Morgantown by new Deputy Mayor Mark Brazaitis.

Speaking to WAJR’s Morgantown AM, Brazaitis contended expanding the city’s borders is an issue of economic justice.

“One of the first steps to make this city better, is to expand our borders,” said Brazaitis. “We have to look at bringing those businesses and citizens at our edges into our town to truly reflect the size that Morgantown is and also frankly, to increase our revenue stream so that we can make those improvements and quality of life that we all want.”

However, Brazaitis’ view of city expansion goes beyond just those three areas.

“As my fellow council member Rachel Fetty says ‘anyone with a Morgantown address, maybe you really should be part of Morgantown,‘” stated Brazaitis. “I think we could draw the map pretty broadly. I think we need a broad vision here, all the way out to Cheat Lake potentially.”

If city council were successful in annexing those businesses into the city, it would be a financial boon for Morgantown. Not only would each business be subject to the city’s Business and Operating Tax and property taxes all of their employees would be forced to pay the city’s $3 a week service fee.

Brazaitis expects to release a strategy for expansion soon.

“I’m going to sit down with City Manager Paul Brake and other city council members in an open forum to talk about a vision for border expansion,” explained Brazaitis.

West Virginia State Code Chapter 8, Article 6, Sections 1-6 outlines three procedures for annexation: annexation with election, annexation without election, annexation by minor boundary adjustment.

Brazaitis is hopeful property and a business owners will want to voluntarily become part of Morgantown.

“Let me be the first to shout out to people out there at our borders, come on and be a part of our city. It’s pretty easy if you do it voluntarily. There are great things that can happen if you become part of our city.”

That would require two petitions submitted to city council, one signed by all qualified voters and another signed by a majority of freeholders from the area to be annexed.

To annex additional territory through a minor boundary adjustment, approval by the Monongalia County Commission would be necessary.

“Morgantown has a number of stresses on it, including population growth. So, we have to be very smart about how we move forward, not just for the next year or two but for the next 50 years of development.”

►  Virginia Supreme Court sides with pipeline in survey lawsuit

The Virginia Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the company developing the Atlantic Coast Pipeline in a lawsuit against a woman who sought to keep surveyors off her property.

Hazel Palmer owns land in Augusta County along the route of the proposed natural gas pipeline that would run from West Virginia to North Carolina. The company went to court after she refused to allow surveys.

She argued in part that because the company was organized in Delaware, a Virginia law allowing surveying privileges shouldn’t apply.

The court disagreed and ruled Thursday that Palmer’s property rights don’t allow her to exclude the surveyors.

Pipeline spokesman Aaron Ruby applauded the ruling.

Henry Howell, an attorney for Palmer, says he may ask for a rehearing on a claim the court didn’t address.

►  Attorney General Morrisey Unveils Training Initiative to Reduce Automobile Consumer Complaints

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey has embarked upon a ‘did you know’ initiative aimed at protecting consumers with proactive training offered to dealerships on used vehicle laws.

The Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division reached out to car dealerships laying out the specifics of current laws and how to comply. The initiative offers in-person training, presentations and other opportunities in an effort to reduce the number of consumer complaints involving motor vehicles, the division’s top complaint category in three of the past four years.

“We know that most of the auto dealers are trying to do the right thing, so we are working to enhance the compliance practices through training dealerships on these laws,” Attorney General Morrisey said.

The initiative emphasizes the dealership’s responsibility to collect state sales tax at time of sale, change the car title over to the purchaser within sixty days of the transaction and comply with federal law requiring a Buyers Guide on all vehicles for sale.

West Virginia law also requires sold vehicles to work properly and drive safely for a reasonable amount of time.

“As is” sales are prohibited and dealerships cannot limit the implied warranty of merchantability.

Additionally, consumers have a right to reclaim a vehicle after a lawful repossession up to time of being resold. Dealerships are required to send written notice to the consumer of intent to re-sell.

--> Monday, July 17, 2017
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