Opportunity: Have Your Say on the US Rescue Plan | News, Sports, Jobs

It’s not often that ordinary citizens get the chance to tell their elected officials how they hope to see $ 22 million spent in their community. But such an opportunity presented itself Tuesday night in Parkersburg… and only a few people showed up to speak.

“I thought there would be more people” Parkersburg City Council Chairman Zach Stanley said after a meeting that lasted only about 20 minutes. “But at the same time … it doesn’t end tonight.”

As Tuesday’s meeting aimed to give individuals a chance to give their opinion on how to spend the US bailout funds, Stanley said the council would also seek advice from nonprofits and d ‘companies.

This money cannot be used to offset tax cuts or make additional payments into pension funds, and perhaps the disappointment in this regard is to be blamed on individuals who remain silent. But there is significant potential in the amount of money being discussed.

Ideas ranged from tackling food insecurity and subsidizing daycare centers to helping youth struggling with mental illness and addiction.

“It’s a unique opportunity”, Parkersburg resident Sue Ellen Waybright said. “And I hope (the board) will continue to ask the public for their input.”

If they do, future meetings should be much better attended by those who surely have a diverse set of fresh ideas for using that money to uplift our community – to move us forward towards a brighter, healthier future. Keeping silent doesn’t benefit anyone.

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