City council passes Backer zone changes
The Versailles City Council Tuesday voted 5 to 0 in favor of zone changes for 188 acres of the old Backer property at 2001 Lexington Road, where developers plan to build 490 single- and multiple-family homes. Council member Gary Jones was absent. The zone changes were already approved by the Versailles-Midway-Woodford Planning Commission. All but 15.77 acres of the land, presently zoned A-1 (agricultural), will be changed to three classifications of single-family housing. The remainder will be zoned R-2 (low-density multiple family). Property taxes A first reading for real property, personal property and motor vehicle and watercraft tax rates for 2017 was held. Unchanged are the real property rate of 5.6 cents and motor vehicle and watercraft rate of 12 cents per $100 of assessed value, while the personal property rate will drop from 11.06 cents to 10.35 cents. Mayor Brian Traugott said a special meeting for a second reading and vote on the rates is needed in order to get the tax bills out by the end of the month, but a date was not set. Bids awarded Much of the meeting was devoted to low bid awards, all of which passed unanimously. . Mago Construction of Bardstown with a bid of $106,144.50 for milling and resurfacing city streets. . Mago Construction with a bid of $17,696 for milling and resurfacing of the 40-space Rose Hill Avenue parking lot, half of which will be paid by Citizens Commerce Bank, with the city doing the striping. Public Works director Bart Miller said after the bank closes, its 20 parking spaces can be used by others. .Lexington Tree Service with a bid of $550 for tree removal on the city's portion of the Rose Hill Avenue lot. . Lexington Tree Service with a bid of $2,650 for tree removal and stump grinding at the wastewater treatment plant. . Comfort Heating and Air of Lexington with a bid of $5,232.72 for a new heat pump system for the lab/bathroom area of the water treatment plant. KentuckyWired The council unanimously approved a resolution allowing Traugott to sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the state Finance and Administration Cabinet to grant rights-of-way to the state for the KentuckyWired program. KentuckyWired is charged with constructing an open access fiber optic network across the state, and in Versailles, needs access to the Douglas Avenue-Lewis Walton Park area. The resolution gives Traugott permission to sign the MOU if outside counsel Linda Ain, an expert in the field who's already worked on a draft, approves the deal. BACKUPPS The council voted unanimously in favor of a resolution amending the interlocal agreement for The Bluegrass and Central Kentucky Unified Police Protection System (BACKUPPS). The new agreement adds the cities of Stamping Ground, LaGrange and Wilmore and counties of Anderson, Breckinridge, Carroll, Gallatin, Garrard, Hardin, Harrison, Hart, Henry, Jessamine, Marion, Mason, Menifee, Oldham, Rowan and Washington to the program. The Morehead State University Police Department was also added to BACKUPPS. Presently, BACKUPPS covers 15 cities and 11 counties, including Versailles and Woodford. Woodford Fiscal Court passed the same resolution last week. The program sets rules and procedures for inter-departmental cooperation needed when police work involves different jurisdictions. 'Those in need' Traugott asked the council its opinion on the need for a central source of information for the needy. He introduced Rita Soper, who recently retired from Bluegrass.org after more than three decades as a clinical social worker. Soper said while there were several longtime agencies in the area that help the needy, a website containing a list of those and others would be a good idea. Council member Ken Kerkhoff said the council should look at best practices elsewhere and establish a database to prevent overuse by some. No action was taken, but Traugott said, "I think we can make a difference in some lives."