An ordinance banning certain classifications of heavy trucks in downtown Morgantown is now law. City Council has voted six to one to adopt the ordinance at Tuesdays meeting. The ordinance will take effect in 90 days.

The 90 day delay is one of the changes made to the original ordinance because of two issues.

“The Police Chief, Prosecuting Attorney and the Public Service Commission all say that in order to enforce this ban, you will need to weigh the truck,” explained Morgantown City Manager Jeff Mikorski.

Mikorski says traffic enforcement stations will need to be set up for weighing trucks suspected of being in violation of the ordinance. Obtaining equipment for weighing trucks and training personnel on using that equipment will also need to be completed before enforcement can begin.

Mikorski explained that time will be needed to get the proper signage in place as well.

“In order to enforce this ban, we will have to get the authority of the state to allow signage, location and character of the signage, allowing the restrictions.”

90 days is a tight time frame to accomplish what needs to be in place before enforcement can begin, but Mikorski thinks it can be done.

“I think we could get very close to dealing with all these issues of the ban, hopefully within 90 days would be enough,” he says.

Council members also agreed to remove the definition of “three or more axles” for banned trucks because certain trucks that have only two axles can weigh more that 13 tons and other vehicles with three axles can weigh much less. At the recommendation of Morgantown Police Chief Ed Preston, the ordinance now bans commercial motor vehicles registered as class 7 or greater making it easier for police to enforce.

Rewriting the definition of banned trucks and other changes during the second reading of the ordinance was one reason Council Member Wes Nugent was the lone dissenting vote on the ordinance.

“The fact that we’re still trying to tack down aspects such as this on second reading gives me pause for concern,” he says. Nugent added he doesn’t believe passing an ordinance that has caused so much controversy and is clearly opposed by the West Virginia Department of Highways and various business interests in Monongalia County is the best way to solve the problem.

Council member Ron Bane echoed the sentiments of the majority however.

“I’ve been on this council a long time, this has been an issue for a long time, and it’s time for us to get an answer.”

Bane says the worst case scenario is the ordinance is challenged in court and the city is told they can’t legally enforce it.

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Comments

  • kc61

    Obviously, the comments made about the Greenbag Road are from those,including a council member, who do not travel it. It is barely equipped to handle current traffic. And how fast will all these trucks go on the Greenbag Road? Looks like the only consideration is that it's not in the precious city limits of our earth-cookie city council.

  • cutty77

    Morgantown as a City is Growing faster than The Heyseed Council people like it. But they don't mind taking in ALL THE MONEY THESE PEOPLE BRING TO TOWN. You can't have it both way. Have some Vision. Its ain't Mayberry anymore Barney.lol

  • Jason R.

    So are all trucks banned including the ones that deliver products to the stores? What about the big satellite trucks that have to make it to the stadium? Are WVU home games not going to be televised anymore because the City of Morgantown wants no truck traffic in the city limits?

  • Mason County Contrarian

    If truckers threaten to stop hauling, then it sounds like a business opportunity for some young, budding entrepreneur.

    Isn't that what we want in West Virginia? That's the great thing about America: if there's a need, someone will find a way to fill it, turn a profit, reinvest, grow, etc. regardless of the circumstances.

    Best not cut off your nose to spite your face.

  • local

    I'm guessing these comments are either all out-of-towners or only the pro-truck comments are allowed through. This is not necessarily a traffic but a safety issue. These are large rock haulers coming from the Greer mines through downtown Morgantown on streets clearly not designed for them. They are speeding up the destruction of Route 7, Brockway Ave. and Beechurst Ave. They take up multiple lanes when they turn and block intersections when they stop at lights. They drive up on sidewalks in residential areas of Brockway in order to make turns. I'm normally not a fan of government meddling but Council has this issue right for once. These trucks do not belong in downtown Morgantown.

    • Trucker

      And you sir are a bold faced liar

      • electro

        NO actually they have it right. The weight of the rock trucks are destroying the streets. They hold up traffic because they cant fit in lanes or take up 2 when the go around turns. They need to use Greenbag Rd as it was built for that purpose.

  • Shadow

    Re: Bane's comment on the worst that can happen. He doesn't mind spending tax money on a lawsuit. WV needs a "loser pays" law and then, he can spend twice the tax dollars. A good example where Home Rule is a mistake.

  • wvtotx

    Every so often I think I miss something about Morgantown and then I read an article like this.

  • thornton

    Those council folks would be right at home on the city council of Santa Cruz, CA.

  • Wowbagger

    This isn't about trucks in general. It is about he who should not be named (co-owner of this site) forcing his will on Morgantown

    • Laughable

      How is this ban going to benefit "he who should not be named" when it is his business that will be directly effected by the ban? Please do tell me, ye of such vast knowledge?

  • william

    These truck drivers should take turns going to these City council homes and drive circles around they homes for a hour a day, everyday.
    Doesn't this council have more important things to do then wasting so much time on this?

  • northforkfisher

    What is the worst thing that could happen, the truckers refuse to deliver to you, or not stopping in the county for fuel and food.

  • Silas Lynch

    So, no more beer delivery trucks in Morgantown? Smart move.

  • knows

    govt in action is like an old 3 stooges movie......sad this though, there are usually way more than 3

  • knows

    1st off if this ban holds the price of everything (concrete asphalt and driveway construction) just went way up.

    2nd and most important this is classic example of govt(any level) at work.... instead of trying to solve the real issue they pass some law that complicates everything. then they try to tell everyone see we are really accomplishing some great things here when in fact they usually only screw things up. if the real issue is traffic this won't accomplish anything

    • Adam

      Prices went way up? Are you kidding, it takes 10 extra minutes to go around downtown on Greenbag Road. Trucks are only banned from the downtown area, excluding Beechurst Ave. This ban only affects large trucks that would rather cut through Pleasant/Brockway or Brockway/Walnut than go the safer, more rural route out University to Greenbag to Earl Core Rd.

      • Trucker

        Trucks arent banned because they voted in a illegal as hell law stupid ass

        • Justin Belton

          If a state government has the right to pass laws such as allowing medical marijuana usage or gay marriage without federal impediment, a city should have the right to pass laws to increase the quality of life for its residents without state impediment.

  • The Answer

    Nugent and Bane are both correct.
    Nugent doesn't want it and Bane thinks the courts will over turn it.