At their regular meeting Monday evening, the Kuttawa City Council voted to partner with the City of Eddyville to keep the Pennyrile Narcotics Task Force active in the community.
Until the new fiscal year, which begins July 1, the Lyon County Fiscal Court has provided half of the funding to have a dedicated narcotics detective in the area, but they will be unable to contribute this coming year.
Eddyville Chief of Police Shane Allison addressed the Kuttawa Council Monday to explain to them what the task force does, and how he feels they benefit the community.
He said the narcotics detective, whom he did not name for the sake of maintaining his ability to work effectively at cracking down on dealers, had been with the force for 11 years. He said the detective uses confidential informants to help fight trafficking in the community and surrounding areas.
Allison asked that the City of Kuttawa budget around $30,000 for the task force, which Eddyville will match.
"I was here before we had it," Allison, who has been a police officer in Eddyville for over two decades, said of the task force, "and I know how it was without it."
The Kuttawa City Council voted unanimously to budget $29,000 from their general fund for the task force.
The council also moved forward with their efforts to bring the city current financially, after pushing to have audits for the last two years completed recently, and passed the first reading of a budget for the 2019-2020 Fiscal Year, which begins July 1.
Other matters of business at the meeting included:
• Passing the second reading of an amendment to the ordinance setting fees for the use of their electrical pedestal units for events in the park. This amendment will allow accredited educational institutions in Lyon County to use the units without paying the fees.
• Passing the first reading of an interlocal agreement ordinance with the county to allow Kuttawa to use the services of the Lyon County Sheriff's Office. The City of Kuttawa, which does not have it's own police force, has been in a nearly identical agreement about the use of these services for years, and pay a fee each year in order to use the Sheriff's Office to patrol the town, but this interlocal agreement simply puts it in writing.
• The council heard a presentation from landscape architect Jonathan Perkins about potential designs for the I-24 exit 40 overpass. The city has discussed the possibility of painting the city's name on the overpass as a way to brand the town as visitors enter. Though no action was taken Monday, the council was able to view several design options and get an estimate of what the project could cost. Depending on the design they decided upon, Perkins said it would cost between $40,000 and $50,000, though the city would most likely seek partnerships or grants to offset some of that cost.
• The council voted to increase their insurance coverage per the recommendation of their agents. At last month's meeting, the council accepted a bid for insurance from the Kentucky League of Cities that would give them coverage equal to their expiring policy, but save them $4,318 on the year's premium.
However, the agents suggested the city was underinsured on many of their buildings and their equipment.
They have since shared with Mayor Jimmy Campbell a quote for an increase in coverage equal to what they believed was appropriate, which he presented to the council Monday.
The new coverages would increase the premium they accepted last month by around $4,500, which means the city will have more comprehensive insurance coverage for an amount nearly equal to what they paid for their expiring policy.
City Clerk Savannah McLeod shared that the city will begin their annual Movies in the Park program on June 29 with a screening of "Home." The event is free to the public and will begin at 8:30 p.m.
The city will allow local organizations to sell concessions at the events on a rotating basis as a fundraiser, and the Lyon County Middle School Girls Basketball Team will be selling at the first movie night.
McLeod also reminded everyone that the Kuttawa Farmers Market is now open for the summer each Saturday from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. or sell-out. Anyone who wishes to sell goods at the market should contact Kuttawa City Hall for more information.
The Kuttawa City Council meets the second Monday of each month at 7 p.m.. Their next regular meeting will be July 8.