The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Our Readers Speak

January 18, 2013

Our Readers Speak - Friday, January 18, 2013

Finding out who owns the crumbing wall

To the folks in Fayetteville concerned about the cut stone wall that is tumbling down, there are several ways to discover whose responsibility it is to fix that wall.

Article 1, section 5 of the    U.S. Constitution states that all U.S., state, county, and city governments must keep permanent records of all meetings, decisions, and actions taken by any of the various agencies of these governments. These records are to be made public upon request except those records pertaining to national security, a person’s adoption, educational, military and health records.

You know as well as I do that the city knew that the wall was being built as it was being built, but was it a private endeavor or was it a city or county project?

Anyone can go to the Fayetteville City Council offices and ask to see the minutes from all City Council meetings from 1-1-1900 to 1-1-1930 to discover if the city commissioned a company to build this wall and why.

You can also go to the County Assessor’s office and search their files for the same information.

You can also go to your county’s public library and search old newspapers on micro-film for any information on the project. In the early 20th century, most people took a great deal of pride in their work and photos were probably taken of the wall along with all of the employees that worked on the job. There is probably an accompanying story detailing the project.

You do not need to file a Freedom of Information Act request to get this information and it will take a great deal of time for you to do the research, but there are people at each of these locations whose job it is to help you should you have a problem.

Gator Williams

Beckley

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