Lexington City Council

Lexington Council Member Indicted on Theft Charges

21 hours ago
kentucky.com

Lexington council member Sasha Love Higgins has been indicted on multiple theft and other felony charges stemming from her former position at a local motel.

The 34 year old was indicted Tuesday on charges of identity theft, forgery, and three counts of theft by deception, according to the Lexington Herald Leader. 

Higgins’ attorney Fred Peters says she will plead not guilty.  Peters also says the first term councilwoman will likely step down from the council.  He says the likely resignation is not an admission of guilt. 

Lexington city leaders are beginning to evaluate the use of electronic billboards along certain roadways in the central Kentucky community.  The idea prompted a number of questions during Tuesday’s council committee meeting.

Lexington City Leaders Discuss Panhandling

Apr 19, 2017
wkyt.com

Panhandling in Lexington received a thorough discussion Tuesday at City Hall.  Mayor Jim Gray says he’s held three meetings on the issue over the last week and a half.

The mayor says he gathered a task force of sorts and recommendations will be coming to council.  One member, Fred Brown says his wife was harassed in a parking lot. “They’re not only holding signs up now. They’re approaching the vehicles and knocking on the windows,” said Brown.

Lexington Crews Assisting with Street Tree Pruning

Nov 21, 2016
Stu Johnson

Lexington officials are ramping up efforts to tackle issues with street trees.  Additional city staff are helping to whittle down a backlog of concerns.

Low-hanging street tree limbs can hinder travel or block motorists’ views, hinder mail delivery, and inconvenience pedestrians. 

Homeowners are required to keep the trees properly pruned, but city crews are also following up and addressing ongoing problems with limbs. 

Environmental Services Director Susan Plueger says another issue is sidewalk upheaval from tree roots. 

kentucky.com

After just two months of operation, Lexington’s newest senior center is serving a growing number of baby boomers. 

Aging and Disability Services director Kristy Stambaugh told the Urban County Council Tuesday that folks 60 to 69 years old made up about 28 percent of total visitors a year ago.  Now, she said, 38 percent are within that baby boomer age range.

Stambaugh said the center’s 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday schedule will likely expand next spring to include a few evenings a week.

Lexington Considering Private Road Signage

Nov 16, 2016
Stu Johnson

Lexington city officials took the first step to identifying private streets Tuesday, a change that requires developers to post signs indicating the end of public maintenance.

Planning Director Jim Duncan told a council committee that making sure private streets are built to the same standards as public streets is an ongoing emphasis. 

lexlf.org

Lexington city leaders are exploring establishing a youth mentoring program within local government.  It would allow employees paid time to meet with those they are advising.

Lexington Pilot Project Focuses on Park Cameras

Nov 2, 2016
kentucky.com

Members of a Lexington Council committee are suggesting a pilot camera program for a neighborhood park.

General Government and Social Services Committee members voted 8 to 1 to spend $30,000 for four high resolution cameras to be located in Berry Hill Park on Lexington's South Side.  They are being proposed as a tool to help ensure a safer park environment. 

Lexington Council to Review Curfew

Oct 31, 2016
lexingtonky.gov

Lexington council members will study the city’s 21-year-old curfew law in the months ahead.

Council member Fred Brown has called for an update to the ordinance that requires anyone under 18 to be in by 1:00 a.m. Saturday and Sunday and 11:00 p.m. the rest of the week.  There are a number of exceptions. 

kentucky.com

Before the first snowflake has fallen, Lexington City Council members are considering modifications to a new sidewalk shoveling ordinance. 

A final vote on the toughened snow removal law for sidewalks is scheduled Thursday.  The ordinance would require private property owners, including neighborhood residents, to shovel sidewalks within 24 hours of a 4-inch or greater snowfall or face penalities. 

wkyt.com

A motion to remove Lexington’s minimum wage ordinance from the books failed in a Tuesday council meeting.  It took two votes before the matter was addressed at the work session.

The Kentucky Supreme Court ruled last week that Lexington and Louisville’s minimum wage increases were invalid. A motion seeking to repeal the minimum wage statute ultimately failed on a 5-9 vote. 

kentucky.com

A six-to-one Kentucky Supreme Court ruling Thursday struck down minimum wage increases in the state’s two largest cities.  

  

  

Lexington’s minimum wage increased 95 cents in July to eight $8.20 an hour.  The rate was scheduled to go up two more times over the next two years before resting at $10.10.

Lexington Continuing Along "Gigabit Road"

Oct 20, 2016
kentucky.com

Work continues on making Lexington a so-called "gigabit city."  The transition to super high speed internet is expected to take years.

Officials began discussing moving to high speed internet countywide two years ago.  City officials says many communities across the country are wrestling with process and cost issues.  A public/private partnership is anticipated in Fayette County. 

Lexington Mayor Seeks Input on Gun Violence

Oct 19, 2016
Stu Johnson

Lexington city leaders are asking police how local government can help to reduce gun violence.  The issue came up for discussion at Tuesday’s council work session in reaction to the shooting death of Lexington Lafayette High School Sophomore Trinity Gay.  She died after being hit in an exchange of gunfire in a restaurant parking lot.  

Police Chief Mark Barnard says some of the best help could come from citizens who have information about those involved in violent crimes.

kentucky.com

New regulations for distributing unsolicited materials in Lexington neighborhoods is advancing within the city council.  Proposed standards received committee approval Tuesday.  

Many households receive the Lexington Herald-Leader’s Community News publication.  Since it includes news and advertisements, publisher Rufus Friday told Council its distribution is constitutionally-protected.

kentucky.com

A new snow removal law for residential sidewalks in Lexington could be in place this winter.  The ordinance got initial approval Tuesday.

The proposal would require homeowners to clear sidewalks within 48 hours after a snowfall of four or more inches.  The law would only effect properties on already-cleared streets.  Council member Peggy Henson cast one of the 11 votes in favor of the ordinance, saying, “I do not want to see another year of people walking in the middle of the street, trying to get to their bus stops or to work."

Stu Johnson

Lexington’s newest council member would like to see future growth restricted to inside the city’s current urban service boundary. 

Kathy Plomin was sworn in Wednesday during a city hall ceremony.  She hopes the city boundary stays put. “There’s a lot of acreage inside that’s underutilized,” noted Plomin.  “So, let’s take a look at that and perhaps look at regulations and make it easier for developers to build within the urban service boundary.”

kentucky.com

Lexington city officials are moving forward with an economic development initiative with grants aimed at businesses, non-profits and educational institutions.  Council members got an update last week during a committee meeting. 

Town Branch Commons Items Come Before Lexington Council

Aug 30, 2016
kentucky.com

While construction is not slated to begin until 2018, Lexington’s Town Branch Commons trail and park project continues to get attention downtown.  It’s on Tuesday’s agenda of the Urban County Council. 

Jonathon Hollinger is senior administrative officer in planning, preservation, and development. He says council is being asked to approve a memorandum of understanding with the city, Bluegrass Community Foundation, Lexington Center, and the Downtown Management District. 

Lexington Council to Review Police, Fire Disciplinary Notices

Aug 26, 2016
kentucky.com

    

Lexington leaders are being asked to modify city council’s notification procedure for police and fire disciplinary reports.  The item will be considered in a special meeting.

Council acted Tuesday to include the matter on a special "committee of the whole" agenda.  Council member Susan Lamb wants to discuss including notification of routine disciplinary reports on council dockets. 

Lexington Council Debated Expanding Boundary

Aug 24, 2016
lexingtonky.gov

    

As the city of Lexington prepares to update its comprehensive plan, at least one council member believes it could include expansion of the urban service boundary.

The matter surfaced during council’s weekly work session.  The city’s plan for where development occurs is updated every four years.  The process starts in earnest in January.  The last time the boundary was expanded to any significant degree was 1996.

Council Rejects Motion on Streetlight Tax Hike

Aug 17, 2016
kentucky.com

Lexington city leaders are beginning the annual process of setting property tax rates for taxpayers.  Once again the issue of paying for streetlights was debated Tuesday at city hall.

There are a number of property tax rates to consider this time of year.  For years, the assessment for city owned streetlights has not kept up with associated costs.  On the first meeting back after a summer break, council members considered a motion to raise rates. 

Lexington City Leaders Review Ethics Law Modifications

Jul 7, 2016
kentucky.com

Several modifications in Lexington’s governmental ethics law are under review at city hall.  A subcommittee reviewed the current ordinance over the last year and a half.  Lexington Council Member Angela Evans says one change calls for including private interest along with financial interest information. “It’s just creating that extra level of transparency that, you know, I do care enough about this organization that I serve on that board and just allowing the public to see that relationship.”

kentuckyconstableassociation.org

A Lexington city council committee will review constable policies in the central Kentucky community.  The request came last week from Council member Kevin Stinnett.  He says his inquiry comes following news stories about constables from the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting.  Stinnett says there may or may not be any issues related to constable work in the Lexington area.  “I think it’s time to make people aware of what’s going on and the efforts that have been made the last couple of years before the state legislature to alter that and their role in the community.  Do we need to

Pavement Policy Debated at Lexington City Hall

Jun 22, 2016
apm-lex.com

   A new method for determining "pavement projects" in Lexington is moving forward.  It got a full discussion Tuesday before council’s Environmental Quality and Public Works Committee.

Lexington Council Appears Ready to Act on Recreational Zoning

Jun 16, 2016
kentucky.com

    Lexington leaders appear ready to move forward with a recreational zoning text amendment.  It’s been a point of discussion for the past few years.

The establishment of a zipline service in a rural section of Fayette County a few years ago started the discussion about permitted recreational uses.  Members of the council’s Planning and Public Safety Committee voted this week to make uses like canopy tours, hiking trails and canoeing conditional. 

Proposed Lexington Sports Complex Draws Opposition

Jun 15, 2016
kentucky.com

Proposed funding to construct a multi-sport complex near the Versailes-New Circle road area is drawing criticism from residents living close to the site under consideration.  Tom Creech told city council members Tuesday the 130 acre site had been considered for a traditional park project.  “We’re kind of thrilled to see that you all are gonna put seven million in the budget. We just like to see this kind of park for all the people instead of a commercial development,” said Creech.

myoldkentuckyroadtrip.com

    Lexington officials are searching for a new tenant to locate in a historic building in the city’s downtown Gratz Park.  The hope is to have a resolution by this fall.

Public Reading of Council Ordinances, Resolutions to Continue

Jun 7, 2016
lexingtonky.gov

Another attempt to modify the Lexington Council’s rules and procedures to eliminate formal readings of certain ordinances and resolutions during meetings has failed to move forward.  The issue, brought forward by Vice Mayor Steve Kays, was before the council’s General Government and Social Services Committee Tuesday. 

Lexington Council Seeks Bus Service to City Park

May 13, 2016
showbus.com

Lexington’s mass transit administrators are being asked to consider expanding service to public parks.   The initial inquiry centers on one large area of green space, Jacobson Park.

The request came from a number of council members during this week’s work session meeting.  Among them, council member Jennifer Mossotti, “What we’re trying to do is instill people to utilize our parks and not only the shopping centers but let’s get out there and be a little healthy.”

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