Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Council hires firm to remove snow from streets

The Midway City Council voted Monday night to have a Richmond firm to remove snow from city streets, a task that Woodford County left in the city's hands after Midway became a fourth-class city last year.

The council also heard complaints from two citizens about the city's policies on business licenses, set Halloween trick-or-treat for 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31, accepted $2,500 in proceeds from the Iron Horse Half Marathon run Sunday, and agreed to grant a building permit for reconstruction of a dilapidated house that had been slated for demolition.

On recommendation from the Streets and Lights Committee, the council voted 5-0 (Joy Arnold was absent) to hire Wright's Farm Services Inc. of Richmond for snow removal. The estimated cost is $1,377.50 per event, with unspecified extra payments if the snow is heavy. Phil Moloney, attorney for the city, was directed to draft a contract with details.

Mayor Tom Bozarth said the deal would give the city what is not had before, a service that will make the city a priority and do all the streets. The county's equipment is unable to do narrow streets. The county's bill for one day of snow removal in January was $1,233.

Council Member Aaron Hamilton alluded to the impending need for a snow contract: "The squirrels are gathering nuts."

The council heard complaints from Laura Wolfrom of Bistro La Belle and Anthony Delimpo, representing his wife's home-based business, about the city's business license tax and its enforcement policies. The issues were referred to the council's Ordinance and Policy Committee; Moloney said one point may need clarification, and Bozarth asked Wolfrom to consult with other restaurants about her objection to her local food vendors being required to have a license.

Bozarth said the city would adopt Council Member Dan Roller's suggestion that all holders of business licenses be listed on the city's website, which Roller said might help them get more business.

John Sensenig of John's Run/Walk Shop in Lexington, a sponsor of the half-marathon, said the third-year event was a big success, with 1,000 finishers "from all over the country. . . . I've been doing foot races for 35 years and I can say in all honesty this is the favorite foot race I've ever done." Bozarth, alluding to some past logistical problems, said, "This is the first year where I think it went very, very well."

The council agreed to a building permit for a house on Martin Street, which the Yount family first said it would demolish but now wants to rebuild, but the permit will require construction to begin in six weeks, not the usual 90 days. Bozarth gave a progress report on two other dilapadated Yount houses, and agreed to have a representative of the family give its own update at the next meeting.

Charlann Wombles, who was appointed to the council after not running for re-election, and after city officials began to focus on property-maintenance issues, told her colleagues, "I would really like to commend you all for the work you've done on these properties. This is long, long overdue."

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