Fiscal court approves franchise ordinance, budget

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By Charlie VanLeuven

The Casey County Fiscal Court unanimously approved a second reading and adopted the fiscal year 2019 budget, and similarly approved a new ordinance to give telecommunications companies the green light to work on county rights-of-way.

At a June 18 meeting, Judge Executive Randy Dial read ordinance 18-003 in summary, which will grant Duo County Telecommunications the right to proceed with KY Wired work to bring fiber optic cable along utility poles, and into the county. The franchise ordinance is necessary for the company to work on county property, and includes provisions to repair any damage that might be made to property in the county’s right-of-way.

Any agreement would be for 10 years, and could automatically renew for two more consecutive five-year terms. No agreement can last longer than 20 years.

The ordinance is non-exclusive, meaning that another company could similarly come to an agreement with the county to do work. In exchange the county will collect franchise fees, and could collect other fees or taxes allowable within state and federal law.

As previously reported, KY Wired will bring high-speed internet to the Casey County Education Center on Middleburg Road in downtown Liberty, and then make its way toward Campbellsville on KY-70.

Any approved entrepreneur could hook into the fiber optic system to create new high-speed internet options for the county. This would likely be done with a tower to transmit the signal wirelessly, as opposed to running fiber optic into the ground.

Magistrate Jamey Maupin moved to approve and adopt the second reading of the ordinance. Magistrate Robby Murphy seconded and it was approved unanimously 5-0.

Also in the meeting, Dial read the 2019 budget in summary, which is as follows: $2.5 million in the general fund, $2.9 million in the road fund, $3.4 million in the jail fund, $595,225 in the E-911 fund, $209,054 in state grant, and $83,050 in the LGEA fund, for a grand total of $9.6 million.

He said that there were just a few changes from the first reading. The E-911 fund grew by $5,000, which Dial said was for the potential purchase of property to build a new 911 communications tower. The jail fund also grew by $5,000, which Dial said was for a Rocket Docket Program from the Commonwealth’s Attorney.

Magistrate Bart Woodrum moved to approve the second reading and adopt the budget. Magistrate Kenny Morgan seconded, and it was approved unanimously 5-0.

In other business, the magistrates unanimously accepted a bid from Hinkle to pay $62 per ton for hot-mix asphalt.

“That’s about a two-dollar increase over last year,” Dial said.

The magistrates also approved a new five-year plan for solid waste. Dial did not go into details about any changes made to the plan, which is in conjunction with the Lake Cumberland Area Development District, but said it was very similar to the last five-year plan.

He said that the plan is available in his office, and also should be on the Lake Cumberland website.

The next Casey County Fiscal Court meeting will be July 2 at 5 p.m.