By Al Owens
Meeting in regular session Monday the Lewis County Fiscal Court tabled accepting Deerview Lane into the county road system until a few minor improvements are completed.
Road Foreman Dane Howard told the court that the road is black topped and in good shape and recommended it be accepted into the system after the improvements are done.
County Attorney Clayton "Buddy" Lykins, Jr. gave second reading to an ordinance amending the budget to show unbudgeted receipts of $75,000 from the Commonwealth of Kentucky for the Boys and Girls Club of Lewis County. The court approved and accepted the amendment.
After a two to two tie vote on two different motions regarding property, liability, fleet and workers compensation insurance the court moved to accept St. Paul Insurance's bid for property, liability and fleet insurance for $77,853.25 and to accept Kentucky Association of Counties' (KACo) bid of $61,919 for workers compensation insurance.
KACo has said it will pull its workers comp in two months if the county did not grant them the bid for the whole insurance package.
The court approved a contract with Brewer's Lawn Service for 2005 for $250 to mow in the Vanceburg-Lewis County Industrial Park at Black Oak and behind the Hollinee Building.
The court moved to approve the relocation of Fuller Branch County Road. Road Forman Dane Howard explained that currently the road lies alongside the branch and is subject to flooding. The road would be relocated away from the branch into the middle of the bottom and would be widened to 16 feet and would be graveled. People's Self Help Housing plans to build 43 low-income houses at that location.
Lisa Psingston from Kentucky Attorney Greg Stumbo's office in Frankfort appeared before the court to announce the establishment of the Kentucky Bureau of Investigation. The KBI is not affiliated with the Federal Bureau of Investigation but is a separate state entity operating on its own.
Psingston said that the bureau features four major areas of investigation. They are drug investigation, Medicaid fraud including food stamp fraud, public corruption and elder abuse.
She told the court that the bureau has satellite offices in Benton, Prestonburg and Maysville.
Linda Goins from Correct Care in Lexington explained that company's program to the court. Medical care can be provided for county jail inmates for a fee of $13 per inmate per month. Care for state inmates is provided at no cost to the county, and that part of the program is already in place.
Jailer Tim Underwood said that the average cost to the county would be $300 per month.
Goins said one trip to the emergency room was much more expensive than that and that Correct Care's program would save the county a lot of money.
The program does not cover the cost of regular doctor office visits.
The court tabled the issue until next month in order to review the program further before coming to a decision.
Amy Kennedy from the Buffalo Trace Area Development District gave the court an update on the progress of the new Lewis County Health Department Project. The county has received a $1 million Community Development Block Grant for the project. A grant agreement meeting is scheduled for Monday, March 21, in Frankfort that County Judge Executive Steve Applegate and Mayor William T. "Bill Tom" Cooper will attend along with Kennedy and the architects to discuss the requirements and regulations of the contract.
She said that other funds involving $250,000 from Rural Development and ARC each are in the works, and those funds should be received in the next 30 to 45 days.
Kennedy expressed hopes that construction can begin this summer. The grant agreement requires that the project be advertised for bid by August 30. The plans are already approved except for some minor interior design changes.
Kennedy then addressed the Garrison Sewer Project. A recent customer list of the households in the sewer project area has been requested. An income survey list is being compiled. The engineers are revising some design plans, but work is taking place on both projects.
Glenn Bannister appeared before the court and offered to donate the old War Surplus Building in downtown Vanceburg to the county for the purpose of creating a workshop to be used in a rehabilitation program for the jail inmates.
Bannister now works for the jail in the family reunification services, the AA program and conducting religious services.
Magistrate Milt Stanfield noted that rehabilitation is important because the inmates should come out of jail better than when they went in.
The court tabled action on the offer until the April session so the building can be evaluated and the court can look into the matter.
The court moved to contribute $1,000 to the Lewis County Little League.
The court also moved to change the name of the North Central Volunteer Fire Tax District to match the name of the fire department. The new name will be the Lewis County Fire Tax District.
The court approved the Jail Commissary financial report and also approved all the claims and transfers for the General, Road and Bridge and Jail Fund accounts.
County treasurer Kathy Dillow reported that the total of all county funds comes to $3,452,777.34. Total disbursements were $2,793,465.01 with a cash balance of $669,312.33. The court approved that report.
Lykins asked the court to act on a $27,999.33 bid for radio equipment received from DKC Radio, Washington, Kentucky. The money comes from a Homeland Security Grant for Law Enforcement. The county must pay the cost up front and then be reimbursed with the grant funds. The grant has already been approved. The court approved the bid from DKC Radio.
Amy Kennedy stepped back before the court to announce that the Adult Literacy program is back in Lewis County. She said it currently has 76 participants and is looking for more. Right now the program is housed in the Housing Authority Building but is looking for its own location. The Adult Literacy Council will soon begin its fund raising program.
Milt Stanfield announced that the county has received $62,125 from the Co-op Emergency Funding program to repair three slips on Holly Road. The court moved to advertise for bids for that project.
Applegate announced that Lewis County Cleanup Week would be from Monday through Saturday, March 21-26. The Lewis County Solid Waste Department will be receiving discarded items at the recycling center off Rt. 3037 daily between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. At no charge, county residents may drop off old appliances, tires, furniture, mattresses and televisions. Items not being accepted are computer monitors, propane tanks and household waste.
Applegate said that the next regular session of the fiscal court would be on Monday, April 11 at 9:30 a.m. in the third floor courtroom in the Lewis County Courthouse.
The March meeting was recessed until Monday, March 28, at 9:30 a.m. for the purpose of a general budget presentation and to open the bids for the Holly Road project.