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Urban ag supporter critical of council move to avoid chicken ordinance vote

Officer Tommy Rosel, left, and firefighter Dennis Orr are sworn-in Tuesday night at the Bardstown City Council meeting by Mayor Dick Heaton. The hiring of the two men mean that the city fire and police departments are both back at full strength.

 

By JIM BROOKS
Nelson County Gazette / WBRT Radio

Tuesday, May 8, 2018 — The Bardstown City Council decision last week that it would not approve an ordinance to allow raising chickens in the city limits ruffled the feathers of the man who was the public voice that supported the measure for more than two years.

Bardstown resident Nick Kipper voiced his disagreement over the city council’s decision to scuttle a vote to allow city residents to raise chickens.

Bardstown resident Nick Kipper said the draft ordinance regarding chickens the council considered “unworkable” was actually the product of more than two years of work that included with input from a wide range of people in the community, the UK Extension office and members of the city council.

Kipper was critical of the council’s concerns about the amount of noise the laying hens might make the ordinance were approved. During the council’s discussion, it was implied that if chickens could be heard by a neighboring property owner, the result would be “an enforcement nightmare.” But did the council consider the wide range of normal, typical city noises that city residents can be heard daily all over the city?

“From my front porch, any day of the week I can hear kids playing, people playing radios, and I can hear 11 different dogs,” he said.

“Why are we applying a different standard to this activity than we do the others? And if the issues are so large, why do we only have a part-time code enforcement officer?”

Mayor Dick Heaton defended the council’s discussion at its last meeting and their decision to not move forward toward approval of a chicken ordinance.

No members of the council responded to Kipper’s comments.

LG&E FRANCHISE AGREEMENT. Prior to the council’s final approval of a franchise agreement aimed at Louisville Gas & Electric, representatives from the company spoke the council about the measure.

The franchise agreement renews one that expired several years ago. The city has had agreements with the company since it brought natural gas service to Bardstown in the mid-1960s.

Typically, the franchise agreements are no longer than 20 years in length and the franchise fee is 3 percent on gross receipts. The fee is a pass-through to LG&E customers in the city limits of Bardstown.

NEW FIREFIGHTER, POLICE OFFICER. Heaton took time at the beginning of the meeting to swear in the city’s latest first responders, Officer Tommy Rosel and firefighters Dennis Orr.

Rosel formerly worked in law enforcement in Nelson County. He and Orr both are Bardstown residents who now work here. Their knowledge of the area is an asset to their departments, Heaton said.

In other action, the council:

— approved first reading of a budget amendment for the budget ending June 30, 2018.’

— heard that the city police and fire departments are now fully staffed.

— heard plans for a Battle of the Badges blood donation drive set for July 26, 2018. Local first responders will compete to see which agency can donate the most blood to the American Red Cross. More details will be forthcoming later.

— heard Chief Billy Mattingly report the city fire department had 167 fire runs to date in 2018, and 334 EMS runs for a total of 501 emergency responses since January.

— heard from Mattingly the city fire department has medicine disposal bags available. Medicines — including liquids — are placed in the bag with water and then sealed. The sealed bags can be safely disposed of in your household garbage, he said. The bags are free and available at the Bardstown Fire Department.

NEXT UP. The Bardstown City Council next meets at 7 p.m. May 22, 2018, in the council meeting room in the City Hall annex adjacent to the Rec. Center on Xavier Drive.

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