Lexington/Richmond

Lexington Council Discusses Diversity Recruitment

Sep 13, 2016
kentucky.com

Lexington public safety officials are working to increase the number of minorities in policing, fire protection, corrections, emergency management and emergency 911.  A number of barriers to increasing diversity were discussed during a council committee meeting Tuesday.

Public Safety Commissioner Ronnie Bastin told members of the General Government, Social Service Committee that agencies are reaching inside and outside the community to recruit employees. 

UPDATE AS OF 5:00 PM 9/9/16 

EKU officials say it could be three weeks before Lancaster Ave between Barnes Mill Rd. and Crabbe St. is re-opened.

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An accident has seriously damaged the pedestrian walkway over Lancaster Ave on the campus of Eastern Kentucky University.

The incident, which occurred around noon Friday has shut down Lancaster between Barnes Mill Rd and Crabbe St. University officials say there were no injuries but the roadway is expected to remain closed for an extended period of time.

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. 

Lexington Establishing Diversity and Inclusion Officer

Aug 31, 2016
kentucky.com

    

The city of Lexington is about to launch a search for someone to head up diversity and inclusion efforts in local government.  A description of the position and responsibilities were offered to city leaders Tuesday.

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. 

Effort Focuses on Tree Protection in Lexington

Aug 29, 2016
Stu Johnson WEKU News

A renewed effort is being made in Lexington to protect trees at city funded construction sites.  Members of the council’s Environmental Quality and Public Works Committee heard an update last week. 

Susan Plueger, Environmental Services Director, says the aim is to get all city departments on the same page when it comes to vegetation during capital construction.  “So, if you’re doing a construction project and you’re planning to keep certain trees, those trees need to be protected during construction so they’re not damaged,” 

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.

The Madison County Sheriff's department is investigating an incident that caused Eastern Kentucky University officials to issue multiple emergency alerts during the weekend. EKU sent out a campus alert shortly after 2:30 Sunday morning. 

The initial alert sent by email, text and voicemail to students, faculty and others in the Richmond area, reported a “dangerous situation” involving a “possibly armed individual.”

15 minutes later, university safety officials said four persons were detained by police on the EKU following an incident in which shots were fired off campus.

Lexington Charles Young Center Earns Historic Designation

Aug 17, 2016
Stu Johnson WEKU News

    

A Lexington community center, known for its cultural significance, especially among African Americans, now holds new historical prominence.  The Charles Young Center is part of the National Register of Historic Places.

The community center in Lexington’s East End opened in 1935.  It carries the name of Charles Young who born in Mays Lick Kentucky and the third African American to graduate from West Point. 

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 Police Accreditation Hearing Draws Small Crowd

Aug 9, 2016
Stu Johnson-WEKU News

A public meeting in downtown Lexington to solicit comment about the Division of Police attracted a relatively small group of people.  It was all part of a voluntary national accreditation process.

The two assessors, both police representatives from outside Kentucky, heard from five people during the hearing at city hall.  One of them was Don Fishback, who believes citizens might benefit from more information about police training.  “What kind of training do the police go through in high stress situations which is when it seems that things kind of go sideways,” said Fishback.

Library Director Weighs in on Possible Move

Aug 3, 2016
lexpublib.org

Officials with the city of Lexington are beginning to study the feasibility of buying the building that currently houses the downtown Public Library.  the move could be advantageous for both parties.

Accessibility Focus of Lexington’s Newest Playground

Aug 3, 2016
Stu Johnson-WEKU News

 

The official unveiling of Lexington’s newest destination playground includes a focus on accessibility.  A ribbon cutting for the half million dollar complex at Jacobson Park took place Tuesday morning.

Central Library Under Consideration For New City Hall

Aug 2, 2016
lexpublib.org

    

Lexington city officials are talking with Central Library administrators about a potential move for city hall.   It’s considered a ‘very early’ discussion.

A joint statement comes from Public Library Director Ann Hammond and Lexington Chief Administrative Officer Sally Hamilton.  It reads that the city and library are exploring the possibility of the city buying the Central Library building for a new city hall. 

FoodChain Kitchen Project Moves Forward

Aug 2, 2016
foodchainlex.org

    

FoodChain, a Lexington based nonprofit, has announced plans to build a Processing Kitchen in Downtown Lexington. The kitchen is meant to both educate and possibly provide employment.

Rains Impact Tobacco Production This Summer

Aug 1, 2016
rootsweb.ancestry.com

Although tobacco production in central Kentucky has fallen steadily over the last decade, local yields could be up this fall.  Steady rain showers over the next week could increase stress in the fields.

Lexington Police to Activate Body Cameras in August

Jul 28, 2016
wkyt.com

A few weeks later than originally anticipated, the first shipment of body cameras is now in the hands of Lexington police.   

 

Earlier this spring, police officials thought body cameras might be incorporated gradually in June.  

 

They say a high demand for this type of body camera pushed back the start-up.   Officers will now begin using the video technology in mid August.  Initially 75 officers will each be issued two body cameras.  

 

Lexington Herald- Leader www.kentucky.com

The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government has received a federal grant of over $14 million to complete the Town Branch Commons Corridor project.  The funds are being awarded by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s TIGER discretionary grant program.   

Hundreds of people of various faiths gathered Wednesday night in Lexington for an event described as a “concert, born of Orlando to remember all victims of hatred and violence.”  Participants included Muslims, Jews and Christians of various denominations.   

In response to last month’s massacre that killed 49 people at a gay bar in Orlando, the concert at Historic St. Paul’s Church downtown featured performances by about a dozen musicians with remarks and prayers led by local religious leaders.   

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.”

downtownlex.com

Violent and deadly outbursts in this country and others around the world are causing new law enforcement strategies at large public events.  An increased police presence was in place for Lexington’s Fourth of July Festival and the Pride Festival in late June.

Collective Bargaining Agreement Comes Earlier in Lexington

Jul 6, 2016
kentucky.com

    The city of Lexington and its police union have reached agreement on a ‘collective bargaining’ document.  It provides for pay raises for some 500 officers in each of the next four years.

 

Thousands turned out in downtown Lexington over the weekend for Pride 2016.  Organizers of the LGBT-focused event were predicting crowds larger than last year’s total of about 25,000.

This year’s Pride included a moment of remembrance for victims of the massacre at a gay club in Orlando led by Pastor Marsha Moors-Charles of Lexington’s Bluegrass United Church of Christ.

MMC: “Although we may not know all the names on this beautiful flag that will be sent to Orlando, God indeed knows their names and welcomed them into their eternal home.”

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

Lexington Pride Festival Organizer Expects Big Crowd

Jun 24, 2016
lexpridefest.org

    Lexington’s ninth public ‘Pride Festival’ will take place tomorrow in the center of downtown.  One organizer believes attendance for this summer’s event could be much larger than last year.

 

 

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 Jail Staff Respond to Questions About Work Environment

Jun 20, 2016
kentucky.com

    

Over 90% of Lexington’s sworn jail staff have been quizzed about their work environment at the detention center.  Council committee members were briefed last week.

Lexington Council Backs $345 Million Budget

Jun 16, 2016
kentucky.com

    Lexington’s city council has overwhelmingly given final approval to a $345 million budget for the upcoming fiscal year.  One item Thursday night did generate significant discussion prior to the vote.

Several council members offered high marks for the budget and the budget building process.  Council member Kevin Stinnett says significant gains are seen in funding for paving, police and fire, storm water, and code enforcement.  “Really worked with council before the budget came out to make sure we had in there what the citizens are calling us for,” said Stinnett.

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. 

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