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Friday, August 28, 2015

Fort Thomas City Council Roundup (8-17-15)

Addison, Scarlet, Dylan, Esther and Kasey Carr after Kasey was given his Lt. badge. 
The Fort Thomas City Council met last week, which was to be the last public meeting for City Administrator, Don Martin. In September, there will be two meetings, as the tax rate for the year is scheduled for Tuesday, September 8. This is a public hearing to receive taxpayer input on the proposed tax rate for 2015.

The proposed surplus for next year is $10,462,009. 

The city is proposing to raise the property tax rate from 3.78% to 3.9%, which would bring in an additional $218,996. 

That includes $46,177 from new property and $51,137 from personal property.

- Fort Thomas Fire Chief, Mark Bailey, pinned a Lt. badge on Kasey Carr. Carr's family filled the first four rows of the council's chambers and many from the Fire Department came to support him as well.

Carr replaced longtime Fire Lieutenant, Richard Boothe, who retired from the department earlier this year.

"Kasey worked hard to get to the top of the promotion list," said Bailey. "We have 18 of the best in the business here in Fort Thomas who work to get to the top of that list. It's a great accomplishment and we should all be proud."

- Awards were given for the Most Entertaining and Most Original groups at the Fourth of July Day Parade. The winners:

Most Entertaining

3rd Christ Church United Church of Christ
2nd Fort Thomas Junior Football League
1st HHS Dance Team

FTM file. 
Most Original 
3rd HHS Robotics
2nd Highland United Methodist Church
1st Tower Place

- Eric Haas proclaimed August 31, 2015 "Don Martin Day" in Fort Thomas. After listing a list of accomplishments under Martin's tenure, Haas said, "Had I know you were going to retire I never would have run for Mayor."

"This makes it sound like I built those on my own, and it’s really been a team approach. I do feel blessed to have worked here. At 27 years I was able to retire and when I hit 27 years and I wasn’t ready to leave yet," said Martin.

Emergency Certificate Signed for Tower Hill Road Slippage
Mayor Eric Haas signed an emergency certificate to have the road slippage on Tower Hill Road repaired without council's consent to sign off the financial aspect of the project.

"Tower Hill Road is experiencing an area of slippage. Initially it was not very severe and the engineer recommended observing it to see if an additional moneymen occurred before signing a solution," said Martin. "Recent rains caused significant movement, which required extraordinary action by the city." 

Martin said typically the city would go through a bidding process to obtain quotes, Haas missed the emergency declaration allowing the city to contract for repairs immediately.

Scherzinger was awarded with the contract to install 12 reinforced piers and 22 plug shafts for $51,160.

Pretty the City Tax Incentives
Councilman Adam Meier's "Pretty the City" initiative, created while he campaigned for office continues to build momentum.

The Northern Kentucky Area Development District is working on the necessary documents for the program and have completed a draft of the ordinance. Once the documents are complete, they will be sent to the city attorney and the committees for review.

"I have not yet seen the draft ordinance or the forms, but I look forward to continuing to make progress on the initiative," said Meier.

New City Website
After working on a new city website for more than a year and using multiple developers, "substantial" progress has been made on the new website.

NKU has been the latest developer to work on the project, which was originally brought up by former councilman, Jay Fossett. 

"With a few more tweaks and additional information from various departments, the website could be in operation by the end of August."

-The Duke Energy Gas and Electric Franchise Agreement was passed 6-0. This agreement allows the city to charge a franchise fee to Duke Energy of up to 5% of gross receipts, which would be passed onto Duke Energy customers.

Right now, the city charges Duke .03%, which is comparatively very low. Hypothetically, a raise in the franchise fee to 1.25% would cover the street repair tax, which has historically been paid from the city's road aid fund and by assessing individual homeowners who share frontage with the streets being repaired.

Read the original FTM report here. 

- A resolution was approved 6-0 that transferred the city's agreement from Insight (Time Warner) to Charter Communications. 

Last year council approved this transfer, but the FCC did not approve the merger. The Motley Fool wonders if the FCC could nix the deal once again. 

- A municipal order to establish Ron Dill as Interim City Administrator was approved 6-0. FTM originally reported that here. 

First Read:
Three ordinances were read for the first time at the meeting. Ordinances must be read once, before they are voted on.

The ordinances dealt with the pay ordinance for police, fire and general services, closing a portion of Riverside Parkway and Waste Fees. FTM will discuss these further.

Chief Mark Bailey pinning a lt. badge on Casey Karr. FTM file. 


  1. Thank you Fort Thomas Matters for continuing to lead the way in coverage for my hometown! I appreciate and trust your judgement and your effort!

  2. Agree! thx FTM!