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Friday, March 30, 2018

More Notes from Council: Street Tax Bills, Renovations to Armory and Mess Hall

Officer Nicholas Hoffman shares his traffic report with city council

News from Police and Fire departments 

Chief Mike Daly gave the monthly police report. He noted that officers will wear mourning bands on their badges in honor of a Pikeville Police Department Officer Scotty Hamilton who was recently killed in the line of duty. The officers will wear the bands through Saturday, April 14.

At the meeting, Daly also announced he will be retiring as of July 31. He has been with the department since 2005 and has a career in law enforcement spanning 27 years. A few days after his announcement, Casey Kilgore was named to replace him as chief.

RELATED: Casey Kilgore Named Fort Thomas Chief of Police

In other police department news, Officer Nicholas Hoffman is the new traffic officer. He is filling a new position created in response to community concerns over speeding and other traffic issues. He has been working in the position since the start of the year to gather information that can be used in measuring effectiveness of the new dedicated role.

RELATED: Police Department Creates New Traffic Officer Position 

Fire Department Chief Mark Bailey asked those present to share the reminder that the spring "leap forward" for Daylight savings time is a good time to test and replace smoke detector batteries. He also noted that defibrillators are out in parks and recreation facilities for the spring sport season.

Law, Labor and License Committee update 

The Law, Labor and License Committee met before the council meeting and had news to share on a number of items.

The committee recommended passage of a new ordinance designed to identify vacant residential properties. The ordinance asks owners to notify and register their empty properties with the city. The move will help eliminate safety hazards and possible code violations. This was the first reading of the ordinance.

Another ordinance will create a Code Enforcement Board in the city. The board would review city code violations, create rules and regulations and set penalties. The committee was not prepared to recommend the ordinance yet because it will affect some language and penalty statements in other ordinances. More work is being done on this topic for future introduction.

RELATED: Proposed Ordinances Address Vacant Homes and Property Issues 

Lastly, the committee discussed the deer population control program proposed and funded by a group of concerned city residents. Members agreed more information and research is needed before moving forward with support of the program.

Other business: Street improvements, renovations, donations 

The city council meeting was packed with information on a variety of city projects underway. Dill reported work has begun on the Burnet Ridge stabilization project.

Crews are finishing up work on improvements to the baseball field including a retaining wall replacement. The city had a slight shortfall on that work, and the Highlands Athletic Boosters raised $30,000 to help bring the projects to completion.

Bids are in for renovations on the Armory and Mess Hall. Work would include tuck pointing, painting and repairs, including soffits and gutters. Estimates for the project were low, and as the plan developed more needs became apparent, said Dill.

When bids came back much higher than the original $320,000 estimate, he was not alarmed or surprised as the scope of the project had grown. Bids came back with a range of $432,700 to almost $699,000. Cincinnati-based Structural Systems Repair Group (SSRG) won the bid. The company has worked with Fort Thomas before on the tuck pointing of the Tower.

"On this project, our goal is safe and dry. It’s the building envelope, addresses everything on the outside of these buildings…This project allows us a fresh start for everything we will do with these facilities," said Dill.

He also noted the city will get a new fountain. Retired city maintenance director Shelby Frazier and his family have donated money for a water fountain to be added to Tower Park.

The council also passed the intent to proceed ordinance for the 2018 street resurfacing program. Three streets that will undergo complete reconstruction are David Drive, Pentland Place and Saber Court. The plan calls for complete removal and construction of these streets, gutters, storm sewer inlets and replacement of granular subgrade with trenches draining under the new pavement.

Property owners are subject to a special assessment that splits work for David Drive and Saber Court 50-50 and for Pentland Place, the city will cover 60 percent and property owner will cover 40 percent.

Costs and scope of the project are:

  • David Drive (from Pentland Place to its terminus): estimated total cost $57,500; $10.07/linear foot 
  • Pentland Place (from Highland Avenue to S. Grand Avenue): estimated total cost $515,000; $12.05/linear foot 
  • Saber Court (from David Drive to Pentland Place: estimated cost: $57,500; $11.41/linear foot 
Terrill Biedenharn of Arno Street addressed council concerning a street light near his property that had been removed by Duke Energy. He noted that children walking to and from Johnson Elementary might need the light for safety. Dill said the city would look into the issue.

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