A minor dust-up occurred at Roanoke City Council’s meeting Monday afternoon that you probably didn’t notice. It was about the Mill Mountain Advisory Committee.
That panel, which dates to 1965, is charged with advising council about Roanoke’s highest-profile park.
Dr. Nancy Dye chairs it. She asked council about its intentions for the group’s future.
Dye was concerned because at the MMAC’s Sept. 27 meeting, Mayor David Bowers unexpectedly showed up and informed members that council was considering disbanding the panel.
It was the first time most of the committee’s members had seen a council member at one of their meetings. The other shocking thing was the mayor’s statement. So Dye, who is no shrinking violet, went to Monday’s meeting in an attempt to get some answers.
The advisory panel has nine members, and among them are representatives of the Mill Mountain Zoo, the Mill Mountain Garden Club and the Fishburn family, which donated the mountain to the city. One of its current focuses is pushing the city to repair an eroded rock wall along Prospect Road, which is a Roanoke greenway.
“Members of this committee walk the mountains, clear the trails and devote countless volunteer hours to keeping Mill Mountain accessible to those who enjoy it. Committee members have spearheaded the effort to restore the historic toll booth by forming a public-private partnership with the city,” Dye said.
“Should this committee be disbanded, I would be saddened and shocked by this sudden and unexpected action.”
Following her remarks there was a lot of hemming and hawing.
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