Chickens still an issue for city

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Council approves wood waste agreement with county

By Stephen Lega

In May, the Lebanon City Council reaffirmed its support for a ban against raising chickens in city limits. Last week, they got a reminder that poultry is still a problem.
At the council’s Aug. 12 meeting, Kim Bell of St. Rose Road said one of her neighbors has had chickens for at least two years, and one rooster specifically has caused frequent problems for her.
"He stays in my yard," she said.
John Thompson, the city's building inspector, said he has spoken with Bell's neighbor three or four times, and he contacted the animal shelter to see if they had any way of catching chickens.
"I understood there was one rooster, but there might be more. They didn't have any way of catching the rooster," Thompson said.
He added that he spoke with Police Chief Wally Brady about how they might catch it, too.
"Call the Turtle Man," Councilman Darin Spalding said.
Bell said several people have told her they'd like to try to catch the rooster.
Mayor Gary Crenshaw replied that if the rooster is in her yard, he doesn't have a problem with what she does with it.
"I've got a 410 [shotgun] you can borrow," Councilman Jay Grundy added.
Bell said she's laughed it off before, but at 5:30 in the morning, the rooster is a problem.
Crenshaw asked City Attorney Kandice Engle-Gray what Bell can do.
Engle-Gray recommended trying to catch the animal alive, then contacting someone to take the animal away.
"But do not discharge a firearm in the city," she added.
Bell said she would do what she can to catch the rooster
"If that doesn't work, will you call me, and we'll go another route," Crenshaw said.

Yard waste agreement
The council unanimously approved an agreement with the Marion County Fiscal Court regarding the disposal of "yard waste and related wood or fibrous debris." Under the agreement city residents will be allowed to take yard waste to the Marion County Transfer Station on Fairground Road.
The yard waste will be stored there, and the city and county would split the cost to grind the waste, at a cost not to exceed $3,500 annually.
City Administrator John Thomas explained that city residents will be able to take the yard waste to the transfer station at no charge, and employees at the station will direct them where to take the waste.
"We get calls nearly every day [about] what to do with it," he said.
The yard waste will be ground probably once a year, and the wood chips would be kept on site, Thomas said. He added if they deteriorate enough to become mulch, then it could be given away.
He also said this should reduce the number of requests for controlled burns in back yards.
Crenshaw said he wanted to make it clear that the city will not be picking up the yard waste.

In other business:
- The council voted unanimously to approve requests for noise variances for the Battle of the Bands on Friday, Sept. 27, and for Ham Days weekend, Sept. 28-29.
- Councilwoman Kate Palagi noted that Windstream is the Internet provider for city hall. She asked if they'd experienced any problems. Crenshaw said the city has not experienced the issues that have affected others.
- The city council approved the purchase of a 2012 Dodge Charger for $19,300 from Bob Allen Chrysler Dodge. Lebanon Police Chief Brady said the 2012 model has 48 miles on it and it still has its full warranty. He added that a 2014 model would cost around $25,000.
- Palagi commented on a note in Thomas's report that a city employee recently attended training on collecting property taxes online. Crenshaw said he doesn't want Lebanon to be the first city to try it, but he anticipates that will be an option a few years from now.
- Crenshaw said the city will work on figuring out the causes of localized flooding that occurred after recent heavy rains, although he did identify one contributing factor.
"Please do not blow your grass cuttings out into the road. That’s part of the flooding problem," Crenshaw said.
Clippings can cause blockages in drains, and the city has an ordinance prohibiting people from blowing those clippings in the road, the mayor said.
- Brady reported that Officer Nick Gray has resigned to accept a position with the Marion County Sheriff's Office. Brady said Gray made the change not for more pay, but because he prefers to work in a rural setting.
- Grundy said he'd noticed the police purchased a dog kennel and asked when the department would be getting a dog. Brady said he hopes it will be on the road the week of Ham Days.
- The council approved an agreement to lease the city's old sewer camera to the City of Loretto for $1 per year for five years. Loretto would be responsible for any maintenance and repairs to the camera during the term of the lease.
- The city approved a request to close roads for Knight Time 5K run/walk, which will be a fund-raiser for the Marion County Baseball Booster Club. Councilman Spalding did not vote on this issue because he is the president of the booster club.
The race is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. Nov. 1. Runners will start on Patriot Way (at the high school soccer field), turn right onto Corporate Drive, turn around at Springfield Highway, run back down Corporate Drive and finish at the same place they started.
The race is scheduled to take place prior to the Marion County-Washington County football game.
- Crenshaw reported that the city has received permission to build a concession stand behind Centre Square, however, the Kentucky Heritage Council and the Centre Square Foundation Board must approve the final design.
Marion County Youth Football had requested the building to provide equipment storage, restrooms and a concession area. The city has allocated $15,000 toward the project, with the understanding that the football league would have to raise funds to cover any additional costs.