by Tony E. Rutherford, News Editor
"I will make tunnel decision," Mayor Steve Williams

Although a decision has NOT yet been made, Huntington Mayor Steve Williams advised Huntington City Council that "I will make the decision" on continued operation or closure of the tunnel. He added Huntington City Council has no authority unless the expenditure would be over $15,000.

Williams addressed the tunnel topic prior to public input. He indicated that council members Charlie McComas and Jennifer Wheeler would be kept informed since it is in their district.

The mayor said he has visited the tunnel.

"The folks who did the work should be patted on the back. It feels safe." However, "neighbors and businesses are tremendously concerned. I'm still evaluating what to do."

Williams continued, "I have asked the city attorney, city manager, HFD, HPD, and public works director for a series of options. The West Virginia Dept. of Transportation owns the tunnel. They have a say on this. "

Answering public calls that have been made to council, he reviewed how decisions are made:

"You  have passed an ordinance that anything in excess of $15,000 has to have City Council approval. I will bring the decision to council  if it costs more than $15,000.  If it does not, I'm not bashful about exercising  that authority. Only one person will make the decision --- I will make the decision. "

Social media has already began reacting to the statement.