Walk with the Mayor to allow locals to voice concerns

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Marshall University students will have a chance to voice concerns about their city April 3, througha Walk with the Mayor event, starting at 5:30 p.m. in front of the Memorial Student Center.

Walk with the Mayor is one of several events Huntington Mayor Steve Williams does to maintain and foster communicative relationships between the mayor’s office and Marshall students. Other events include Coffee with the Mayor and town halls.

Bryan Chambers, director of communications for the City of Huntington, said this is the fifth year the mayor has been doing neighborhood walks.

“We do them not just around Marshall, but we do them in every single neighborhood of the city,” Chambers said. “It’s amazing how much you can see by walking through a neighborhood, as opposed to driving through a neighborhood.”

Though the mayor has been doing walks for years, this walk will also include other city and public directors, officers and staff of various expertise.

“It isn’t just the mayor. It’s the police chief, the fire chief, our public works director, our code enforcement officers, staff members of the Water Quality Board,” Chambers said. “Consider it a mobile city hall, if you will.”

Chambers said the route of the walk is not determined by the mayor’s office, but instead is determined by students.

“We ask the SGA (Student Government Association) to talk to students about what areas they want us to see,” Chambers said. “For example, maybe there’s a code enforcement issue; maybe there are some potholes in an alley that need to be repaired; maybe there’s an area where there could be more lighting. How can we, as a city government, address those issues?”

Walk with the Mayor serves as a way for the mayor and other Huntington government officials to see in real time what it is that Marshall students and Huntington residents see on a daily basis.

“It’s all about being more engaging with our constituency, and Marshall University is a large part of that,” Chambers said. “Marshall students are Huntington residents, just like anyone else, and we value their opinion greatly, and we want to address any issues or concerns they may have.”

Trey Delida can be contacted at [email protected].

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