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Event permits, fees discussed

WEIRTON — An ordinance receiving its initial reading by Weirton Council on Tuesday would establish procedures and a rate system for the use of public spaces and facilities in the city by groups planning special events or activities.

The ordinance, “creating a special events section in the city of Weirton codified ordinances to provide provisions regulating and permitting special events and parades held in the city of Weirton,” received upon its first reading.

No comments were offered on the ordinance during Tuesday’s meeting; however, in an e-mail with The Weirton Daily Times on Friday, Assistant City Manager DeeAnn Pulliam explained “it will streamline the process of the organization of parades and special events within the City.”

Pulliam further explained in the e-mail, “an application would be filled out by those having the events, which would then be communicated to council and appropriate departments for approval.”

According to a copy of the ordinance acquired following Tuesday’s meeting, “it shall be unlawful for any person to conduct or participate in any parade, public assembly or special event unless a written permit has been issued in accordance with the provisions of this ordinance.”

Exceptions are available for spontaneous public events, recreational activities which do not require closure of public streets or other rights of way and do not interfere with the normal use of public property, funeral processions, students going to or from class or participating in educational activities while under supervision of school authorities, members of the military, police or fire service acting in official capacities, a government agency or city-owned property.

Those seeking to hold an event must submit an application, along with a $25 non-refundable fee, at least 60 days prior to the proposed event, including a description of the event and what public spaces would be used. Applications would be reviewed by municipal departments and then submitted to city council for its consideration.

In addition, fees for the use of city personnel may be assessed under the ordinance, including police fees of $38 per hour per officer, fire/EMS fees of $30 per hour per firefighter and $150 per hour for firefighting apparatus or medic unit and public works fees of $25 per hour per laborer and between $75 and $150 per hour for equipment. Those additional fees may be waived for city-funded or co-funded events.

Permits can be revoked by the city manager or a designee, with or without consent by council, for false or misleading information in the application, or if the terms of the ordinance have been violated.

Violations of the ordinance will result in a fine of up to $500.

Events also could be canceled by the city as a result of unforeseen circumstances, in which case refunds of fees will be available.

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