Fiscal Court helps Carrollton pay for fireworks

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By Jeff Moore

Carroll County Fiscal Court Tuesday approved $7,500 toward the city of Carrollton’s Fourth of July fireworks show at Point Park.

District 2 Magistrate Dean Miller said he had received a request from the city to assist with about $8,000, half of the cost of a show that had been estimated to cost $16,000.

“It’s the best thing I’ve seen at the Point,” Miller told the court. He said he didn’t see a problem with supporting the program, noting that the county helped fund fireworks held at General Butler State Resort Park in previous years.

The city found a new vendor this year, Vito’s Fireworks of Covington, that came in at $15,000 for the July 4 show. The half-hour program will feature more than 65 fireworks, including an assortment of special shells and beginning with one that displays the American flag.

Carroll County Judge-Executive Harold “Shorty” Tomlinson said he believes the request should be discussed as part of the 2014-15 budget process.

“We do them like we do anyone else and consider them as part of the budget,” Tomlinson said.

But Miller said he wants to see it funded out of the current year’s budget.

Miller made a motion to fund half the program’s cost at $7,500. District 1 Magistrate Floyd Bowling seconded the motion.

District 3 Magistrate Mark Bates said he believes the fireworks are a good event.

Tomlinson said he would not be voting on the request. It won approval 3-0 with the judge-executive abstaining.

After the meeting, Tomlinson said he didn’t vote because he believes the request should be considered with others as part of the budget process.

“I understand the guys wanting to go ahead and approve it,” he said.

College project expected to advance

State funding for the new Jefferson Community and Technical College campus in Carrollton appears ready to win approval as part of the state House of Representatives budget. Carroll County Judge-Executive Harold “Shorty” Tomlinson told fiscal court Tuesday that the budget should have passed a House vote on Wednesday and be in the hands of the Senate on Thursday.

The college project has remained in the budget just as Gov. Steve Beshear included it, he said, despite some minor changes the House has made. “I’m pretty sure the Senate won’t just (rubber) stamp the House budget,” Tomlinson said. Based on his meetings with state senators, however, he believes the college project will remain in the budget after any changes are made in the Senate.

The $16 million project includes construction of the first new building and access roads to the site on land that was once part of Camp Kysoc. Under the state proposals, localities would have to come up with 25 percent of the funding for the project. Tomlinson said fiscal court will need to consider this during creation of the budget for the 2014-15 fiscal year.

Erosion exposes gas line near Ohio River

Tomlinson said the county is working with Carrollton Utilities to address an erosion problem that has exposed a natural gas line that runs near the Ohio River. The county and utility are working with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet to find a solution to the erosion, which Tomlinson believes is connected to installation of a drainage ditch for U.S. 42. Erosion along the Ohio River banks may also be a contributing factor. The county is asking officials from the federal Natural Resources Conservation Service to look at the river’s impact to consider any federal help that may be available to control the erosion. “Right now we do not think there’s any security or safety problems,” Tomlinson said. He said officials just don’t want it to worsen and pose a risk to the line that feeds the city of Carrollton.


Salt deliveries arrive in Carroll County

Tomlinson said the county received a shipment of 100 tons of salt for treating county roads Friday, March 7. He expected another shipment of 100 tons to be delivered Tuesday. The county owes the state transportation cabinet about 74 tons that it borrowed when the county ran out during February’s extreme weather.

Weather has damaged county roads

Tomlinson said a slide on Stafford’s Ridge Road has taken about half the road. “We need to go ahead and have it fixed before we lose a lot more of the road,” he said.

He is working on options and a contractor to make the repairs and said he will report to the magistrates as soon as he knows more. County crews worked to build a culvert Tuesday on West Prong Locust Road to address a slide area there that has taken about three feet of the road, Tomlinson said.

On the rail crossings, Tomlinson said the one on Hwy. 227 clearly needs to be replaced. Vehicles crossing there are using caution trying to miss the areas that have deteriorated. He hopes he can get the CSX Railroad to take part in a program where the state transportation cabinet assists with funding to replace crossing with concrete. Tomlinson said this is needed on Hwy. 227 because of the amount of traffic and the number of large trucks that use it.