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Council discusses property issue

SALYERSVILLE – The Salyersville City Council met in regular session on Monday, August 21, holding the second reading of the ordinance setting the tax rates and discussing an ongoing property issue.

During the discussion for paying the bills, City Council Member Patricia Frazier asked Mayor Stanley Howard about the over $7,000 bill for mosquito spray for the city, with Howard explaining that would be enough for three years. Important to note, there is a state program that will spray the city and individual homes for free, which is how the city has handled this for the past many years.

The council reconsidered a nuisance ordinance, which had been through the first reading process several years ago, but came to the same conclusion as last time, that as-is it wasn’t quite ready to be passed, so they decided to table it to the next meeting. The nuisance ordinance would set rules for cleanliness and things that could be seen as eye sores, such as broken-down cars in front of houses, excess old tires, etc., but the council wanted time to read through it further and make notes of changes they would like City Attorney Jeff Lovely to make prior to voting on it.

They approved the second reading of the ordinance setting tax rates for fiscal year 2023-2024, agreeing to keep the tax rates the same as the previous year.

Council Member Paul Montgomery was not present at the meeting on Monday.

Lovely also updated the council on an ongoing property issue with regards to a city road, with one property owner reportedly blocking off the road and other property owner objecting to that. Lovely said the road is the city’s position that those streets are open city streets. He said he could find no record where the streets had been closed, so they are considered to be opened city streets, and no one has the right to block those streets. If they are blocked, the city can and will remove the obstruction and will refer any matter to law enforcement and the county attorney’s office to be investigated as a criminal matter, Lovely said.

The council agreed to open an opioid settlement fund with Salyersville National Bank, which is required to receive the state grant funding from the attorney general’s settlement with pharmacies, distributors, wholesalers and manufacturers of opioids.

Nora Howard, the superintendent for Salyersville Water Works, presented a brief report of their current status, also updating the council that they are in the process of replacing sewer pumps and they are setting up a system to be able to replace them more regularly to keep there to from being any gaps in service. They also explained that if the county raises their water rates, as they have asked the PSC to consider, it doesn’t necessarily change the city’s water and sewer rates.

She also noted that 37% of the water meters in the city water system are not working properly, but Water Works employees are manually reading those meters, and they are in the process of trying to figure out which ones need completely replaced and their warranty status. She said that by identifying the broken meters and manually reading them, people may see an increase in their bills by the third month after that, but that’s not a raise in rates, but just considered a more accurate reading of their water usage, which may not have been accurate for some time.

A member of the public, Ana Merritt, shared a petition she is circulating for family reunification, basically pushing to have her family members who are stuck in another country to be able to come to the United States. She is a first-generation immigrant, and has lived in Kentucky for half her life, but asked the council to help support her cause since she lives in Salyersville. She said she has talked to lawyers, lawmakers, etc., and exhausted all legal avenues, and is hoping by petitioning this issue it will eventually get to the right person to help. The link for her petition is

The next regularly scheduled Salyersville City Council meeting is tentatively scheduled for Monday, September 18 at 7 p.m. at Salyersville City Hall.

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