PIKEVILLE, Ky. – During the November 1 Pike County Fiscal Court meeting the topic of the upcoming election was the main topic of discussion.
In August of this year the group, Pike Countians Against Solid Waste presented the court with a petition asking for the question to be added to the ballot in the November election.
Pike County Clerk, Rhonda Taylor, verified the signatures on the petition and the certification was issued clearing the way for the addition to the ballot.
Currently the court is composed of six magistrates and a judge, if this new form of government passes the court will consist of a judge and three county commissioners, the magistrates positions will be eliminated.
Two mapping options were presented to the court during the meeting showing what may possibly happen to the districts if the vote passes and the county goes to the three commission panel.
In Map 1 Districts one which is currently served by Jeff Anderson and has approximately 12,767 residents and District two which is served by Vernon “Chick” Johnson which has approximately 11,771 residents would be combined, District three with approximately 9,665 residents currently served by Leo Murphy and District four with 10,208 residents and served by Kenneth Robinson will combine and Districts five and six served by Hilman Dotson and Bobby Varney with approximately 10,056 people in District five and 10,527 in District six would combine.
If the redistricting happens two of the three districts will border Pikeville city limits.
Map 2 shows District one and six combining making the commissioner in that district serving 23,294 residents, with Districts two and four combining the commissioner in that district would serve 21,979 residents, and the combining of Districts three and five would have the commissioner serving 19,751 residents.
If redistricting takes place, all three district will border Pikeville city limits.
If the vote passes the new form of government will not go into effect until 2018 and it will stay in effect for four years.
Currently residents vote for the magistrate in the district in which they live under the commissioner form of government, residents will be able to vote for commissioners regardless of what district the commissioner is from. Meaning a commissioner would have to run a county wide race.
Currently the closest county to Pike which has a commissioner based government is Johnson County which has a total of 24,260 residents in the county. The majority of counties in the Commonwealth that have a commissioned county government are larger metropolitian areas.
Assistant County Attorney John Doug Hayes said having to run a county wide race would be terribly expensive.
In other business,Pike County Sheriff Rodney Scott address the court in regards to the purchase of the six new cruisers the department was able to purchase through a Homeland Secuirty Grant.
Sheriff Scott said, “We were in dire need of these cruisers, most of our cruisers have over 200,000 miles on them.
Harold Layne was appointed to replace Angela Lester on the Pike County Ethics Commission District Board.
The Shelby Valley Volunteer Fire Department requested approval to apply for LGEDF Coal Severance Tax Grant so the department will be able to purchase a rescue truck, which will cost approximately $50,000.
Shelebra Bartley with the Pike County Health Department (PCHD) addressed the court regarding a new program the department is offering. Get Pike County Active is a free exercise and nutrition program.
For more information on the program contact the PCHD at 606-437-5500.
An update on the TelaWorks program that was started a few months ago revealed two Pike County residents had been hired by the company and should beginning working next week.
TelaWorks will be located in a building on Ford Mountain in the Johns Creek area which housed a former daycare facility.
The next scheduled meeting of the Pike County Fiscal Court is Tuesday, November 15 at 10:00 a.m.
Kendra Mahon is a reporter for the Williamson Daily News. She can be reached at [email protected] or 304-235-4242 ext. 2278.