Fiscal court accepts tax rates, discusses road issues

Posted September 27, 2017 at 9:07 am

Clinton County Fiscal Court held its regular meeting last Thursday evening with all court members on hand and primarily only general items of business, including tax rates and road department related items on the agenda.

The court first dealt with routine issues including acknowledging the treasurer’s report, paying claims and bills and approving fund transfers.

During discussion on claims and bills, the issue of tornado sirens, which have been purchased by grants, was discussed with Director of Emergency Services Director Lonnie Scott. Two more sirens are on the way, with one earmarked for the Central Grove (Central Union) area and the other for the Huntersville area. Scott noted the delay in the sirens being shipped was because the same crews that do the shipping were assisting hurricane relief efforts in Florida as of last week.

The court also received, and acknowledged acceptance of tax rates from the Soil Conservation District, Extension Service and School District, with the latter keeping the 2016 rate structure and the other taxing district allowing for the over four percent compensating rate.

The court then discussed some road adoption petitions, as last month, magistrates in two separate districts had presented petitions and had viewers appointed and the process started on adopting areas of roadway, one in magistrate Ricky Craig’s district and the other in magistrate Terry Buster’s district.

Craig noted during the discussion that he had basically withdrawn his petition after county attorney Michael Rains explained that after researching the roads in question, it appeared they were part of subdivisions, thus under the county road ordinance, would be required to be maintained by the entities that constructed the subdivision.

Buster said he had talked to all three landowners in his district who were involved and each thought the road was not part of a subdivision and some suggestions were made as to what could be done. Rains advised magistrate Buster to try and get more information as to original owners and noted if it could be determined the road was not actually a part of a subdivision, the issue could be revisited.

Also in relation to county roads, three viewers were appointed to begin the process on a petition of accepting the Franklin Road, which consists of about six-tenths of a mile, into the county road system.

County Judge/Executive Richard Armstrong then discussed the need for a new grader for the county, saying two older graders should be sold and also noted one had bad brakes and was beginning to be a hazard to operate.

The judge requested permission from the court to purchase a grader for the county at a state surplus auction that was to be held earlier this week. He said there was a couple of possible graders the county could be in line for that would be in the price range of $15,000 to $30,000.

Magistrate Buster questioned whether or not there should be a cap on the amount the county should spend to purchase the grader and after some discussion, made the motion to allow judge Armstrong to purchase a grader at the auction, but with the amount not to exceed $40,000.

The motion passed on a 4-2 vote, with magistrates Hershell Key, Johnny Russell and Patty Guinn voting yes with Buster and magistrates Ricky Craig and Mickey Riddle voting no. Both Craig and Riddle, although saying the county could use a new grader, said they felt a new dump truck was needed more at this time.

The court did vote unanimously to hire a part-time person to keep the restrooms at the courthouse cleaned during the upcoming Foothills Festival weekend, with the person to be paid $8 per hour.

Sheriff Jim Guffey then updated the court on a project from a Somerset-based group that provides free bicycles to needy children in a six-county area, including Clinton County.

Sheriff Guffey told the court that although he would be lobbying for more, Clinton County has been guaranteed some 70 bicycles, along with helmets, to be distributed to deserving children in Clinton County during the distribution in Somerset on October 21 between 8 and 11 a.m., Central Time.

Children who are eligible have to be between the ages of five and 12 and anyone who knows of a child deserving to receive a bicycle should contact School Resource Officer Ricky Marcum to submit the child’s name and information.

Also, anyone who would like to volunteer in transporting children to Somerset to pick up the bikes, etc. may contact the sheriff’s office.

Magistrate Craig then questioned judge Armstrong about why court members had not been informed earlier of the situation pertaining to allegations and charges made earlier this month pertaining to a Clinton County Jail employee.

Judge Armstrong said that he had only been notified about three days (prior to the meeting) and that the jailer had not contacted him about the matter. Further, county attorney Rains only noted that the situation was an “ongoing investigation” being conducted by Trooper (Jason) Warinner of the Kentucky State Police.

The court was also presented a monthly activity report from the Tri-County Animal Shelter from coordinator Jamie Scott-Cross and a copy of that report appears in a separate article in this weeks edition.

The last item not listed on the agenda was the appointment of fiscal court members to various county-related committees that are being formed, such as parks and recreation, animal control, etc. Each magistrate volunteered to serve on certain committees and more details on the committees and what the responsibilities will be, will be published in next week’s Clinton County News.

The next regular meeting of Clinton Fiscal Court is scheduled for Thursday, October 19 at 5 p.m., but due to it falling on Foothills Festival weekend, may be altered and changed to a call meeting to be announced later.