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City adopts policy random drug testing

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By Steve Doyle

The City of Shelbyville is now a drug-free workplace.

The city council on Thursday night adopted a municipal order that puts in place a new set of guidelines and procedures to ensure that city employees are not using illegal drugs and alcohol while on the job.

City Personnel Director Mary Hayes Smith has spent several weeks developing this policy with the city’s insurer, the Kentucky League of Cities. It calls for random drug testing of all employees in safety-sensitive positions and those who drive city vehicles.

The policy mostly outlines specifics, including naming prohibited narcotics, which would ensure employees understand clearly the issues. Any employee assistance programs would remain in place.

Smith said some details still were being worked out, but that she believes this policy closes loopholes in the existing employee handbook.

“We’ve never had random drug testing,” she said. “Before it was just based on reasonable suspicion.”

Testing will be handled by a third party – an affiliation with Jewish Hospital Shelbyville – and likely would be conducted quarterly.

Mayor Tom Hardesty noted that by adopting this particular policy the city would be using language and procedures already vetted by the Kentucky Labor Cabinet, which comes with benefits.

“We know that having this in place will earn us a discount [about 5 percent] on our insurance premiums,” he said. “We will spend about $53,000 this year, so we would save more than $2600 for something else.”

 

Street paving

 

The city accepted a low bid of $117,411 from Flynn Brothers Contracting of Louisville to start resurfacing nine streets. City Engineer Jennifer Herrell described for council members the work to be completed:

§       7th Street from its southern end to Washington.

§       8th Street from Clay Street to the railroad in the north.

§       11th Street from Clay to Washington, including refurbishment of the rails on the railroad track there.

§       Cardinal Drive, from Cherry to Sanford.

§       Sequoyah Drive from Pueblo to Seneca.

§       Spruce Drive from Bayberry to Jennifer.

§       Hardesty Lane and Troon Court and Doral Court in Brentwood.

Herrell said the timetable for the project would depend on the refurbishment of the rails on 11th Street. “That really needs to be done first,” she said. “I’ll contact R.J. Corman upon approval and get this started.”

Rubber strips would be added to the rails, which would help preserve the asphalt.

She said if all goes well, she hopes to start work by early to mid-October.

 

Hi Point bond assessment

 

The council passed on first reading an ordinance levying the annual assessment to 51 lot owners in the first phase of Hi-Point subdivision. That charge for 2009 would be $1629.46, which goes to pay off bond debt under the agreement established in 1993.

City Clerk Inez Harris explained that this appropriation was handled by contract with the bondholders through a bank in Louisville. The city only acts as the collecting agency, though it does get a small fee ($2,100) for its services. The arrangement expires in 2018.

She said there are some landowners who have not paid the assessment and that in past years there was bond equity that covered the shortfall. This was not the case.

“What do we do if a landowner does not pay?” council member Donna Eaton asked.

Said Hardesty, “We would have to put a lien on their property.”

 Some streets in Shelbyville are about to get a new coat of asphalt.

The Shelbyville City Council approved Thursday night a low bid by Flynn Brothers Contracting of Louisville to start resurfacing nine streets.

City Engineer Jennifer Harrell described for council members the work to be completed:

§       7th Street from its southern end to Washington.

§       8th Street from Clay Street to the railroad in the north.

§       11th Street from Clay to Washington, including refurbishment of the rails on the railroad track there.

§       Cardinal Drive, from Cherry to Sanford.

§       Sequoyah Drive from Pueblo to Seneca.

§       Spruce Drive from Bayberry to Jennifer.

§       Hardesty Lane and Troon Court and Doral Court in Brentwood.

Harrell said the timetable for the project would depend on the refurbishment of the rails on 11th Street. “That really needs to be done first,” she said. “I’ll contact R.J. Corman upon approval and get this started.”

Rubber strips would be added to the rails, which would help preserve the asphalt.

She said if all goes well, she hopes to start work by early to mid-October.

The project will cost $117,411. Flynn’s bid was the lowest by roughly $20,000.

In other decisions, the council:

§       Approved a municipal ordinance establishing Shelbyville as a drug-free workplace, which broadens the city’s existing policy and would save money on insurance premiums.

§       Passed on first reading an ordinance levying the annual assessment to 51 lot owners in the first phase of Hi-Point subdivision. That charge for 2009 would be $1629.46, which goes to pay off bond debt under the agreement established in 1993.