Court approves $16.7 million FY 2016-17 budget
By a 7 to 0 vote, Woodford Fiscal Court Tuesday unanimously approved a $16,707,601.81 budget for fiscal year 2016-17, which begins Friday, July 1, but the question of whether the parking lot at the county park will get a makeover soon remains unresolved. Magistrate Duncan Gardiner (Dist. 6) was absent. Judge-Executive John Coyle said county Parks and Recreation Director Rich Pictor agreed with the idea of delaying a $25,000 remodeling of their offices and using that money to help pay for the parking lot repaving and resurfacing. Pictor told The Sun that the parking lot repaving and resurfacing will cost $163,000. The 55/45 county/city split in the interlocal agreement governing funding for his department would have the county paying $89,650 and the city $73,350. County leaders say the work needs to be done soon and that the city should chip in its 45 percent. "Anybody that was out there when they had the fair and the play and the rec center and . pool all going at once - and I didn't hear of a bad wreck or anything, so I think we were fortunate to have avoided that. Everybody agrees that the number one priority out there is to get that lot paved and striped ." said County Attorney Alan George. Versailles Mayor Brian Traugott reiterated that the parking lot is on county property and said while the city pays half of the debt on the Woodford Theatre, only the county receives the $1 per-ticket fee from performances there. County fiscal '17 appropriations include: . General fund: $11,016,945.19; . Road fund: $1,948,101.98; . Jail fund: $2,185,206.78; . Local Government Economic Assistance: $310,995.16; . State grants: $102,166.64; . Federal grants: $556,795; . Emergency Management: $103,214.78; . Debt services: $484,176.28. Emergency notification Emergency Management Director Drew Chandler got the court's unanimous approval for a replacement for the Everbridge Emergency Notification System. In past meetings, Chandler said AlertSense will offer more versatile and cheaper service. The new contract will run through Sept. 30, 2017, and cost the county $687.50 per month. Chandler said he'll seek grants to help pay for the program. Part-time EMT Outgoing EMS Director Hunter Shewmaker received the court's unanimous go-ahead to make an emergency hire to replace the person he'd hired on the same basis two months ago. That worker, he said, had resigned due to family issues. Clarinda Sheffler, who works part-time for the Emergency Management department, is the new hire. Coyle then directed the personnel committee to come up with a plan to advertise for a replacement for Shewmaker, who announced recently that he is retiring. Library appointments In a rare close vote over a Coyle appointment, the court voted 5 to 3 in favor of appointing Jennifer Embry to the Woodford County Library Board of Trustees and 5 to 3 to reappoint Camille Allen to a second, four-year term. Each time, Coyle voted "yes" and Magistrates Gary Finnell (Dist. 3), Mary Ann Gill (Dist. 7) and Jackie Brown (Dist. 8) voted "no." Brown said he wasn't comfortable with both being from Midway and reminded the court that the trustees have the power to recommend library tax hikes. Library budget The court also accepted into its record - noting it was not an approval - the library's suggested budget for fiscal '17: . Total income: $1,586,500; . Payroll: $984,200; . Books and materials: $163,500; . Operating expenses: $167,400. Jail dryer problems County Jailer Michele Rankin said the remaining working dryer at the detention center, built in 1990, caught fire Friday night. Finnell asked, "Is that the reason for all the laundry hanging on the fence out there?" Rankin said yes. Rankin also said that tomorrow she'd present a check for $26,000 to county treasurer Sabra Garmon to cover an overage in the jail's medical budget. Some of that money will come from the jail's commissary fund, she said. "With the heroin epidemic and lots and lots of hospital visits, we've far exceeded that," Rankin said.