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Ambulance service updates & honoring fallen soldier

SALYERSVILLE – The Magoffin County Fiscal Court met in regular session on Tuesday, July 19, discussing upcoming events, an update on the ambulance service and honoring a fallen soldier.

Under departmental reports, Magoffin County Deputy Judge Kevin Howard updated the court on the industrial park water project, explaining the contractor currently is working on the plumping for the pump station, but the parts to actually get the pump stations up and running are ordered, but 24 weeks out. He said the water tank is being constructed and should be completed in three weeks.

For the parks, Howard said new trash receptacles have been installed at the Magoffin County Horse Park and there are two horse shows scheduled for August, one by the Salyersville Masonic Lodge and the other is a group from Letcher County, with the dates not set, yet. He said there is a horse show scheduled for September 17 for the Magoffin County High School Girls’ Basketball team.

At Ramey Memorial Park, Howard said the ballfield lights and poles have been delivered and will be installed soon. New benches have been ordered to replace the old ones, as well as for adding a few more benches. The construction of the batting cages is scheduled to begin the last week of July. Magoffin County Judge/Executive Matt Wireman explained that the contractor started drilling the holes for the light poles, but the soil wasn’t suitable for how they bid the project, wanting to do an $80,000 change order. Wireman said they have brought in a company to do soil sampling all over the park to find where they can put light polls safely without having extensive unexpected costs, but noted they may still have another change order for some of the light poles due to the ground being so wet there.

At Battlefield Park, Howard has met with the playground installers, and they will be scheduling a date to construct and install playground equipment soon. New benches and trash receptacles have been ordered to go in and around the playground area. Wireman said the group that will be installing the playground equipment are actually volunteers through the millwright/carpenters’ union who wanted to do something to help the community.

At the Bloomington Park, he said construction is set to begin on the restrooms at the end of the month.

A veteran’s road dedication ceremony will be held for Sgt. Claude Howard on July 30 at 11 a.m. at the entrance of Shepherd-Hale Cemetery Road off KY Rt. 7, near the Floyd County line in the Grassy Creek area.

Howard said they are waiting on Hinkle to schedule a date to begin road resurfacing projects, but COVID-19 had affected their staff heavily, causing many setbacks due to lack of employees.

The fiscal court approved the resolution honoring Private First Class Julian H. Patrick and naming of the bridge located on Kentucky Route 7 in Salyersville, at mile point 25.055 to be forever known as PFC Julian H. Patrick Memorial Bridge. Patrick was killed in action in Germany during World War 2, who was posthumously awarded three Bronze Stars and a Purple Heart. The bridge dedication will be scheduled at a later date and the full resolution will be printed at that time.

The court also received the budget of the Magoffin County Extension District Board.

As they have done the last couple years, the court approve the auction contract with JM Wood to sell the current KACo Mack truck, which they made over $40,000 on the last one they auctioned off after using for one year. In relation to that, they also approved the agreement with Worldwide Equipment for a new tri-axle dump truck, which has went up roughly $20,000 from last year, but still well under the sell-back price. Wireman said it will have a Logan truck bed, made right here in Salyersville.

The court approved the resolution and agreement with the Department of Rural and Municipal Aid for bridge replacements under the 80/20 Bridge Program (20% matching to be paid by the county), with three bridges included in the program this year: Doug Joseph Road on Mash Fork, Patrick Branch Road on Burning Fork, and Stephens Fork on Cow Creek.

The fiscal court approved the Magoffin County Sheriff’s 2021 tax settlement, general, oil, gas, unmined coal and franchise, with the sheriff’s office handing over the funding owed to the fiscal court from the settlement during the meeting.

As some housekeeping, the fiscal court approved the Solid Waste Update of Area Designation, an inter-agency agreement with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet for services to be performed in conjunction with governmental agencies, the lease with Big Sandy and Technical College for use of two classrooms and one office at the Lloyd M. Hall Community Center, and the updated county road list.

The court also approved the authorization of advertisement for bids to place fill at the Bloomington Park for parking lot expansion.

They approved opening a bank account at Salyersville National Bank for the clerk’s storage fee account, as required by the legislature.

The court approved a resolution authorizing House Bill 1 projects, which are the coal severance projects that have to be renewed annually until completed. Wireman explained that these projects include the upgrades to Ramey Memorial Park, Half Mountain and Bloomington Park, economic development project, and upgrades to emergency services. He said they have already approved these once, but they have to be approved at the beginning of each fiscal year until completed and/or closed out.

Under communications, Wireman updated the court on the temporary workers and the court reauthorized him to hire as needed to those positions.

Wireman also expressed his condolences to the families of the fallen officers in Floyd County and the court’s support to the law enforcement community.

“Having grown up in law enforcement, that was one of those things you were always worried about, but we’ve seen those three families have their worst fears come true,” Wireman said. “It is my understanding of the situation over there, and I don’t know technically if anything like that has happened around here, but it would have been in history. I’ve been privy to specific information, and it was unbelievable what this guy done. It’s something you wouldn’t even think of in a movie. We as a community, who among us doesn’t travel to Prestonsburg and Floyd County and go up by Allen on the way to Pikeville? Those are our police officers, too. They protect and serve everybody, including us.”

Wireman also noted the horse show held by the Masonic Lodge at the Magoffin County Horse Park last Saturday raised nearly $4,100 for those families affected by the police shooting, which was the most amount raised at a horse show there.

The Magoffin County Animal Shelter is currently at capacity, Wireman said, noting they are trying to move them out as fast as they can, but they have limited space right now. He said they have a large list of calls about stray animals and they will be coming, but asked for the community to be patient. The animal shelter is accepting monetary donations, as well as for food and supplies for the animals, but he said they are looking at more fundraisers for the shelter.

Wireman also said the new ambulance service is doing well, so far, with the only calls he’s received on Net Care being accolades, stating, “it’s sure a whole lot better than it was.”

“It’s totally different,” Wireman said, comparing to the previous ambulance service. “The attitudes, the people working – one of the guys, and their family member passed, but he said the people who came in were compassionate and caring and they were there quickly. I don’t know of very many issues where we’ve not had an ambulance on the way, and that was 15 times a day before.”

The next regularly scheduled Magoffin County Fiscal Court meeting is tentatively slated for Tuesday, August 16 at 6 p.m. in the fiscal court room in the Magoffin County Courthouse Albert Patrick Building.

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