TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY
By John L. Ross / Staff Writer
An announcement about the construction of a strip mall in Williamsburg came on the heels of a unanimous approval for property annexation Wednesday.
During the regular monthly meeting of the Williamsburg City Council, Mayor Roddy Harrison explained that two ordinances annexing two parcels of property needed a second reading for approval Wednesday.
Both properties are along Hurricane Hollow Road.
One property, owned by Robert Massey, is 3.295 acres; the other parcel, owned by Tim Akins, is 3.9 acres.
Both property owners requested to be annexed, according to Harrison.
The Massey property was approved for annexation with a motion from Council member Laurel West and a second from Council member Erica Harris.
The Akins property was also approved with a motion from Council member Richard Foley and a second from Council member Mary Ann Stanfill.
Harrison then told council members that a strip mall development is in the works for that property.
“There’s no confirmation yet on what businesses are going in there,” Harrison said. “I think he’s getting them filled up.”
He added that there was “signing of papers” to continue getting the strip mall up and running.
In other council business:
— An amendment to the current city ordinance governing the sale alcoholic beverages within city limits were approved after the second reading Wednesday night.
During October’s regular meeting Mayor Harrison explained the ordinance, which was approved by a special election in the city in March 2012, needed to be tweaked in order to come into compliance with the state law.
One change noted was the valid license dates will now begin May 1 of any applicable year to April 30 of the next year.
A second change involves the sale or purchase of alcohol during an election day — that no longer applies with the state law, and must be changed for local laws to comply.
A third change was the elimination of not selling to persons who appear not to be providing for their family. Harrison said it was learned this was very difficult to enforce, and not necessary in the city’s ordinance.
All municipalities must by in compliance with the state statute by Dec. 11, according to Harrison.
Foley motioned to approve the amendment, with a second from Harris. Present council members were unanimous with this decision. Council members Chet Riley and Troy Sharp were unable to attend Wednesday’s meeting.
— “The audit is done,” Mayor Harrison told council members Wednesday.
Marr, Miller & Myers, PSC, certified public accountants in Corbin, performed the audit — the city received the report Nov. 1.
And the city came out just fine.
“They’ve done a great job,” Harrison said of the city clerk’s office. “(City Clerk) Teresa (Black) does such a great job I never worry about it — I don’t get stressed.”
The net position of the city shows just over $14.8 million in its coffers as of July 1.
Foley motioned to approve the audit, with a second from West. Council members were unanimous in this decision.
After the audit was approved, Foley had questions for the mayor.
One question in particular he asked concerned the Kentucky Splash Water Park, where Foley noted receipts were down several thousand dollars this year.
“Weather,” was the mayor’s one-word reason. “It’s not a cop-out — that’s just it.”
He said on days when the weather cooperated, “the crowds were fantastic.”
“It was just a bad summer,” Harrison said.
Stanfill agreed. “It rained about all the time,” she said.
Harrison added that he’d like to approach tourism about getting on the bandwagon to urge state lawmakers to change the start date for school — making it later for students to return to classes and extending the tourism capabilities of the summer months.
However, that did not help the summer 2013 season. “That’s really the only answer to being down (in revenue) — the weather,” Harrison said.
— A pressing water loss issue will soon be addressed. Harrison said that early in 2014 he has arranged for a company to come speak with council members concerning ways to reduce water deficiencies and water loss problems.
Harrison said the representatives from the yet-to-be-named company will explain a deal where they come in and replace all the current meters with electronic meters. Harrison said these are “guaranteed” to cut the water loss.
The change would ultimately pay for itself, according to Harrison, by saving the money spent fighting the water loss and/or deficiency.
“We (as a city) can’t afford it,” he said, adding that he met the person scheduled to come speak through the League of Cities. “We want to really attack this water loss problem.”
— Christmas in a Small Town is slated for Saturday, Dec. 14, according to Harrison. The parade will kick off at 6 p.m. and head toward the park, where there will be caroling, hot cider, tree ornaments and other holiday activities. For more information contact Williamsburg Tourism.
— The annual Shop With A Cop program has been scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 19. Those interested in helping the cause should arrive around 5 p.m., Harrison said. “I feel like this is one of the better things we do,” Harrison said, adding the plan is to help 150 children again this year.
— There will be no December meeting of the Williamsburg City Council, Harrison told council members Wednesday. He also requested a possible change to the meeting time of the city’s regular meetings — instead of the current 6 p.m. time to meet, he thought maybe 5 p.m. would be better. Present council members agreed, and the issue will likely show up as an amendment in the January regular meeting, which will still be at 6 p.m.