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Friday, January 26, 2018

City Council Roundup: Moving ahead with Visioning, VA Homes, Street Repairs

Land Use and Zoning Committee members pour over maps at its formative meeting.

--> The announcement of an upcoming public meeting for the Visioning and Community Plan was the highlight of the short January meeting of the Fort Thomas City Council.

The visioning project committees will present their work so far and encourage input at a public meeting to be held Wednesday, January 24, at 7 p.m. in the Mess Hall (801 Cochran Avenue).

City Administrator Ron Dill encouraged residents to attend the meeting, consider joining one of the committees and to fill out the community survey available through March 2018. A link to the survey is on the Fort Thomas Community Plan website, and paper copies are available at the public library, the city building and other places around town.

Information received on the surveys so far will be shared at the public meeting.

RELATED: You’re Invited: Fort Thomas Community Plan Public Meeting

Moving ahead

City council moved ahead with a number of projects underway this year:

Deer management program: The community raised about $3,600 for the project. City staff is working out how to implement the program, the timing involved and what ordinances might be necessary. Staff will present their findings at a special session of the Law, Labor and Licensing Committee tentatively scheduled for Monday, March 5, at 7 p.m.

Vacant homes ordinance: City staff members are exploring code enforcement options available to the city for this ordinance. They will report on at the March Law, Labor and Licensing Committee meeting.

VA homes project: Lenders for the VA homes developer, Bloomfield/Schon, have requested a formal document outlining details of the sale of the property to the developer. City council approved permission for Mayor Eric Haas to sign the real estate transfer agreement.

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Burnet Ridge culvert project: Smith Construction won the bid for repairs and improvements of the Burnet Ridge culvert, on and near the property owned by Adam Blau. The timeline for completion of the work has been pushed back into early summer so that it can be done during the construction season.

After bids for the project were rejected in October by the city because they came back far exceeding city engineers’ estimates, the project was rebid in December. Smith Construction’s bid was $89,200. Dill mentioned the city has had a good experience with the company who did work on the last pier project on Tower Hill.

Firefighters’ contract: City council authorized the mayor to sign an agreement for a three-year contract with IAFF Local 1928 that represents city fire service personnel. Language has been added to accommodate overtime rates for 24-hour shifts and for lateral entry into the department. This is the last of the city employee contracts. City staff and police contracts were signed at the beginning of the fiscal year.

A caution for residents

Fort Thomas Police Sgt. Will Hunt gave the monthly police report. He praised his colleagues and their spouses for help with the annual Cops and Kids program. In December, 55 children were given $300 each and were taken on a shopping spree for the winter and holidays. The money is raised all year by the department and especially at its annual golf outing.

Sgt. Hunt also took the opportunity to warn residents that the end of the holiday season and the onset of cold weather has not deterred some individuals from theft. Area residents have reported car and garage break-ins as well as footprints in the snow that indicate attempts to enter homes.

"Please lock your doors. We’ve had about five streets hit last night and about 20 cars, and every single one of them were unlocked. The weather doesn’t keep these guys away," he said.

The officer also warned that with tax season comes tax-related scams. A resident lost $6,000 recently in one such scam, he said. "If it sounds like a bunch of bogus stuff, it probably is. The IRS is never going to ask anyone for their personal information over the phone," he said.

Street program ordinance

City council heard the first reading of the 2018 street improvement ordinance, apportioning costs for six streets, based on engineering estimates. Assessment rates for property owners are based by per linear foot. The estimates are:

  • Custis Avenue (from Washington Avenue to Alexandria Pike): $9.64/linear foot
  • Diana Court (from Highview Drive to its terminus): $8.03/linear foot
  • Highview Drive (from Highland Avenue to its terminus: $9/linear foot
  • Lafayette Court (from Washington Avenue to its terminus): $6.93/linear foot
  • Lilac Lane (from Highview Drive to Newman Avenue): $9.40/linear foot
  • Washington Avenue (from Highland Avenue to the city’s corporate boundary with Newport, Joyce Avenue: 9.74/linear foot

A second reading and approval will take place at the next council meeting.

1 comment:

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