Letter to the editor: West reflects on first year as Owenton mayor

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2011 was a year of a lot of changes here in the city of Owenton.
We have cut some salaries, made changes in the administration, cut our budget by $80,000, changed our phone service at city hall, the fire department and the industrial foundation for a savings of $2,500 per year. We’ve had seven areas resurveyed that had been done since 1981, but were not sent to the secretary of state, nor was it filed at the county clerk’s office. We also got back half of our property that was mistakenly deeded to Kentucky American Water when it was sold in 2005.
We have five houses torn down that didn’t meet the building code - a house on East Perry, one on East Adair, and the other three on Ransdall Street.
We have sent 126 notices on houses and businesses that didn’t have numbers on them, 47 notices on nuisances ordinances, along with 40 verbal warnings.
Changes were made to the dog ordinance to say that you cannot have a dog, on a leash or not, if it is known to be vicious regardless of breed. We adopted an ordinance on chickens, fowl, and livestock in the city limits.
We did away with the net-profit tax on businesses, adopted the 2012 International Property Maintenance Code on houses for building houses, plumbing and electrical. We also included in the same ordinance how tall weeds and grass can be before it is not in code.
We have blacktopped 11 streets, but before we could do the blacktopping, we had to repair five of those streets that had sink holes in them so that they would not sink in again.
We did concrete work at the clothing store, also on (highways) 222 and 224, Seminary Street and South Main. We edged some sidewalks, put up some street signs, traffic bumps on Beck Street and graveled sides of the streets. There were some streets that didn’t have any outlet signs, but we took care of them and changed a couple of streets to one way only.
We bought a used 2009 Bobcat with a new broom and snow blade to keep the streets clean in the summer and the snow removed in the winter. We had a new fence put up between the City of Owenton and Virgil Cobb at Thomas Lake. We bought a new police car and four M16s for the police department.
At this time, we are having the original city limits surveyed because there were some questions as to where the actual line really is.
I have enjoyed working for the people of Owenton this first year and with the city council, because without their approval we couldn’t have done a lot of things that we accomplished in 2011 and in the future.

Horace “Doug” West
Owenton Mayor