Lexington/Richmond

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. 

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.

    Today’s ribbon cutting to recognize the renovation and expansion of Madison County’s Emergency Operations Center attracted military, local government, business, and interested citizen representation.  The scheduled disposal of chemical weapons stored nearby played a key role in the development of the center.

RICHMOND, Ky. (AP) — An official says it is expected to cost about $20 million to make repairs at a central Kentucky chemical weapons destruction plant. 

Bechtel Parsons Blue Grass, the general contractor for the plant in Madison County, said it is seeking compensation from General Atomics of San Diego for the cost to replace piping with deficient welds since the welds were done by a subcontractor for that company.

New Drug Treatment Program Planned for Lexington Jail

Jun 9, 2016
riccigreene.com

A new long term substance abuse treatment program is being implemented at Lexington’s jail.  Members of a Lexington city council committee were briefed on the initiative this week.   Substance Abuse and Violence Intervention Program Director Amy Baker says the plan calls for a 20 bed six month treatment format for male inmates.  “To receive long term treatment in hopes that the issues that brought them there will be addressed in jail and when they get out of jail, the cycle will be broken.”

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 Bikers Urged to Try Cycling to Work

May 20, 2016
lexingtonky.gov

    

There is an effort in Lexington to increase bike traffic to and from the workplace.  It’s right in line with today’s ‘National Bike to Work Day’ observance.

Information from the American Community Survey in 20-14 showed just over 1 percent of Lexington residents biked to work. 

Sidesaddle Competition Part of High Hope Event

May 20, 2016
kyhorsepark.com

The 48th High Hope Steeplechase event at the Kentucky Horse Park this weekend will include two new lady sidesaddle races.  High Hope Racing Director Michele Primm says it will represent the third leg in a sidesaddle series and feature European World Champion Susan Oaks.  

Primm says steeplechase racing dates back centuries to when people in England raced from one church steeple to another church steeple.

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.”

Lexington Council To Vote on $2.5 Million for Police Body Cameras

May 11, 2016
kentucky.com

Lexington police are planning to roll out body cameras to some 400 officers this summer.  The $2.5 million dollar purchase must still win approval by the council. Members of the council’s planning and public safety committee got an update Tuesday. 

Assistant Police Chief Dwayne Holman says the money would go for 800 cameras, two for each user.  “We want officers to record from the initial contact throughout the conclusion of that encounter, whatever that law enforcement contact is, we want to record the start and end,” said Holman.

This week’s speaker in the Chautauqua Lecture series at Eastern Kentucky University says he’s concerned about the state of liberal education in the U.S.

Dr. Michael Roth is President of Wesleyan University in Connecticut and author of “Why Liberal Education Matters.”     

WEKU is joining the Richmond Register, The Downtown Richmond Association and the Eastern Kentucky University Department of Government in hosting an early debate among candidates for Richmond City Commission Monday evening, April 25.

Helping the Homeless, Focus of Lexington Awareness Campaign

Apr 25, 2016
kentucky.com

A public awareness campaign on the best ways to help homeless persons is in the early stages of development in Lexington.  The campaign begins with a recommendation to not give cash to street corner solicitors.

Lexington Office of Homelessness Prevention and Intervention Director Charlie Lanter says giving money can be a way of supporting a drug or alcohol addiction.  Lanter says such well-intended generosity can also serve to undermine existing agencies assisting the homeless.  “Giving them cash may actually be keeping them on the streets,” says Lanter.

Lexington Looking to Increase Recycling Fees

Apr 21, 2016
lexingtonky.gov

The city of Lexington is moving toward increasing fees for public and private entities using the recycling center.  The matter came before City Council’s Environmental Quality and Public Works Committee Tuesday. 

Lexington Water Improvement Projects Under Review

Apr 20, 2016
lexingtonky.gov

    

Lexington city leaders appear ready to change prioritization for select water drainage projects.  The issue came before the city council’s Environmental Quality and Public Works Committee Tuesday. 

Fayette PVA Adopting New Ag Classification Procedure

Apr 13, 2016
fayettepva.com

Fayette County’s Property Valuation Administrator is implementing a new agricultural classification taxation process.  David O’Neall detailed changes before the Lexington council Tuesday.  Current law allows property owners to receive property tax deferment for ten acres or more that’s used for agriculture.  O’Neall says requests must now come from current property owners.  “As properties sell, the new property owner will receive a letter from me saying, essentially, the ag classification is not transferable.  You’ll need to request it if you believe you qualify for it,” said O’Neall

UK Officials Want to Permanently Close Section of Rose Street

Apr 12, 2016
kykernel.com

    

The University of Kentucky is asking Lexington officials to permanently close a portion of Rose Street.  Representatives made their case Tuesday at Lexington City Hall. 

Lexington City Leaders Eye More Park Cameras

Apr 11, 2016
roadtrippers.com

Lexington’s city council is considering upgrading security at area parks.  It was a topic of discussion during last week’s committee meeting.

 

There are currently about 50 security cameras at Lexington Parks and Recreation facilities.  Police Lieutenant Mike Wright says cameras can have an effect on crime in any given area.  “It may lower the property crime at that location where the camera is, but citywide stats, it may just displace it to where the cameras aren’t,” said Wright.

 

Lexington Mayor Offers $345 Million Spending Plan

Apr 5, 2016
Stu Johnson / WEKU News

Lexington Mayor Jim Gray says the $345 million budget he’s recommending is a sign of a healthy and growing city. 

Before Gray even got into the nuts and bolts of his spending plan, he told his council audience there’s good give-and-take.  “We have lively debates and compromise,” Gray said. “We just do it Lexington style.  Like I said earlier, respectfully.”

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