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Bradfordsville family looking for place to stay after fire

By The Staff

Bradfordsville family looking for place to stay after fire

A fire at 6 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 17, resulted in smoke and water damage to a house at 205 E. Main Street in Bradfordsville. The Bradfordsville Fire Department responded to the scene.

Bill Gribbins and his children, ages 16, 14 and 13, were at home at the time. His wife, Gina Gribbins, was at work at Village of Lebanon, where she works as a nurse.

Gina Gribbins said no one was injured, but repairs to the house will take three to four months.

She said the family's clothing also suffered smoke damage, but the smell is coming out with repeated washing.

The Red Cross has put the family up at the Hampton Inn in Lebanon for a few days, but Gina Gribbins said they are looking for a three-bedroom house or apartment.

Anyone with information about a possible house or apartment, can reach the Gribbins at the Hampton Inn. The number is (270) 699-4000, and they were in room 200 as of Monday.

Toy giveaway at Cardinal Den Christmas Eve

The Generation Gap is hosting a toy giveaway at 6 p.m. Dec. 24 at the Cardinal Den.

Junior Adams said toys and snacks will be given away. The giveaway is for children up to the sixth grade.

For more information, call (270) 692-1125 or 692-3703.     Holidays will affect government offices

The Christmas and New Year's holidays will affect the schedule for local government offices.

The County Judge's Office will be closed from Dec. 24-26. The office will reopen Dec. 28. The judge's office will close again from Dec. 31 through Jan. 3 and reopen Monday, Jan. 4.

The Marion County Clerk's Office, the Marion County Sheriff's Office, the PVA Office and the Marion Circuit Clerk's Office will close Dec. 24-26 and again Dec. 31-Jan. 1.

The Marion County Health Department will be closed Dec. 24-25 and Dec. 31-Jan. 1.

Lebanon City Hall will be closed Dec. 24 and 25 and again Jan. 1.

Garbage pick-up will be affected by the holidays as well.

The sanitation crews will be picking up their routes earlier than usual Thursday, Dec. 24.

There will be no trash pick-up on Fridays, Dec. 25 and Jan. 1. Instead, sanitation crews will pick up two routes on the following Mondays, Dec. 28 and Jan. 4. Because the crews will be picking up two routes those Mondays, county residents should be aware that they may come by earlier than usual.

Fiscal court receives county clerk's, sheriff's budget proposals

The Marion County Clerk's Office and the Marion County Sheriff's Office presented their 2010 budgets to the Marion County Fiscal Court last week.

The proposed clerk's office budget included estimated receipts and disbursements of $2.68 million. This is an increase over the projected 2009 budget of $2.643 million in receipts and $2.642 in disbursements.

The proposed sheriff's budget also shows increases over 2009. The 2010 sheriff's budget estimates receipts and disbursements of $689,000. The 2009 budget projected receipts and disbursements of $646,425.42.

The fiscal court approved the sheriff's budget during its Dec. 17 meeting. The county clerk's budget has not yet been approved. County Judge/Executive John G. Mattingly said the clerk did not yet have a figure on excess fees.

Census takers wanted

The U.S. Census Bureau is looking for people to fill positions to help conduct the 2010 Census.

The Census Bureau will hire 1.4 million people nationwide, including 10,000 in Kentucky, to assist with the effort.

A census is required by the Constitution every 10 years, and it has been taken every 10 years since 1790. The census helps determine the number of seats states receive in the House of Representatives and the shape of legislative and local government districts. The census also affects how more than $400 billion in federal funds are distributed to local communities for health-care programs, job training, libraries, public transportation, roads and schools.

Census hiring will begin in January of 2010 and increase in March and April.

Most of the positions are temporary and for census takers who go door-to-door beginning in May to visit households that have not returned a census questionnaire.

Applicants must be a U.S. citizen or have a U.S. permanent residency card (green card), age 18 and older, have a valid Social Security Number, and pass a basic skills test. Most jobs require a driver's license and use of a car. 

Both full-time and part-time jobs allow flexible schedules and close-to-home employment. Pay for census takers starts at $10.75 per hour and varies depending on the job and the location.

To learn more about applying for a census job, call (866) 861-2010.

State auditor reports several problems with KLC

The Kentucky State Auditor's office has released a special report regarding the Kentucky League of Cities, which is supported by fees paid from cities across Kentucky, including the four incorporated cities in Marion County.

The state auditor has reported weak board oversight and inadequate policies by the KLC. The audit report noted 30 findings and included 140 recommendations to improve board oversight of the KLC.

Some of those findings include:

- Executive staff salaries have increased significantly from 2002 to 2009. The executive director's salary increased 95 percent in that time from $170,248 to more than $330,000. The deputy executive director's salary increased 80 percent, from $141,753 to $255,258, and the chief insurance services officer's salary increased 93 percent, from $123,909 to $238,867.

- KLC staff received a retirement bonus as a forgivable loan. The board set aside $400,000 for this bonus, the principal was to be forgiven over a five-year period. The auditor's office found the total cash outlay for the bonus compensation program has been more than $533,000.

- The auditor's office also found instances of conflicts of interest, such as the KLC spending $1.4 million with a law firm where the executive director's spouse is a law partner; spending $28,600 at Azur Restaurant, which is partly owned by the executive director's spouse; and payments of $14,413 for decorating services to the wife of the chief insurance services officer.

- The audit also noted numerous gifts and gratuities for the KLC's executive staff from KLC vendors. Some of these gifts were reimbursement to the KLC from a vendor for the admission to a strip club in Las Vegas for three KLC staff members; two trips to Naples, Fla., for the chief insurance officer and his spouse from a reinsurance vendor; and lodging in Munich, Germany, was provided by a reinsurance vendor for the deputy executive director, the chief insurance officer and their spouses.

The KLC's revenue from city memberships grew from $322,000 in 1998 to $430,000 in 2008. During that same time period, the KLC's overall revenue increased from $4.3 million to $11 million.

The state auditor's office concluded that the increase revenue should have been used to lower membership dues or insurance premiums or for additional training programs.

Parent meetings a success, superintendent says

Marion County Superintendent Donald Smith gave a final report on his parental involvement meetings during the Dec. 15 Marion County Board of Education meeting. The fourth and final parental involvement meeting was held Nov. 30, and an estimated 100 participants attended, he said.

Beginning in November, Smith began having special chili suppers and inviting specific groups of parents, specifically parents of African American students, free and reduced lunch students, special education students and gifted students. According to Smith, 22 parents signed up to be on his Parent Advisory Committee. Smith said he still needs two more parents to sign up at the following schools - Calvary Elementary, West Marion Elementary and St. Charles Middle.

In other matters:

• The board approved a change order in the amount of $10,545.00 to Isaac Tatum Construction for the Marion County Area Technology Center addition and renovation project.

• The board approve pay application No. 3 in the amount of $193,815.77 to Isaac Tatum Construction for the Marion County Area Technology Center addition and renovation project.

• The board approved consideration of donated musical instruments from the United States Army Reserves.

• A special called meeting was scheduled for Jan. 19, 2010, for the purpose of conducting the formative (mid-year) superintendent evaluation and a self-evaluation of the Board.

Circuit Clerk's office will no longer handle passports

Because of increased costs and security requirements, the Marion County Circuit Clerk's office will cease being a passport agent, according to Marion Circuit Clerk Kim May.

Dec. 31 is the final day the Marion Circuit Clerk's office will be a passport agent. However, the office will be closed that day, so Dec. 30 is the final day they will accept passport applications.

May added that the post office is in the process of filing paperwork to become an agent and hopes to be approved in the near future.

May said she apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause. In the meantime, citizens can visit www.travel.state.gov, call the U.S. Passport Agency at 1 (877) 487-2778 or email npic@state.gov for more information.