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Shelbyville City Council: Clifton Court accepted into city system

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Owner agrees to city’s improvement requests

By Todd Martin

With a few conditions, the Shelbyville City Council voted unanimously Thursday night to add Clifton Court into the city’s road system.

The committee accepted the recommendation from the Public Works Committee that had suggested the city ask the development’s owner to:

  • Sign a maintenance agreement for the on-site detention basin.
  • Mill the existing streets and replace with 1 to 1.5 inches of new asphalt.
  • Clean the common areas to meet city ordinances.
  • Make the city’s approval to accept the road contingent on the Triple S Commission’s approval of the amended planned unit development changes, which will create 24 individual lots, one for each home. Post a bond for the improvements, including a 20 percent markup.

“Our main concern is the common areas,” Shelbyville Mayor Tom Hardesty said. “We feel that if it’s cleaned up and in good repair when this new homeowners association takes over, they’ll be able to maintain it. But if it’s in disrepair when they take over, and they have to come through and do a big clean-up right off the bat, then I don’t think they’ll be able to get it done.”

Built more than 15 years ago by owner Robert French, the 24 homes were to provide lower-income families with affordable housing and provide a tax exemption for the developers. Currently the site has 24 rental properties on just one lot, with Clifton Court being a private road.

Now, with the approval to be part of the city’s system, first requested on Dec. 20, French will take the request before Triple S for approval to turn the single lot into 24 separate lots, one for each individual home.

Mark Hynes, president of the non-profit, Housing Partnership Inc. – which will purchase the land and help the current renters with finding loans and setting up the HOA – said a full clean up was already planned. He did ask that the group be given until Oct. 31 to make all the changes, to “coincide with the Citizens Union Bank [financing] agreement.” And the group agreed to all the requests.

Hynes also said Housing Partnershipwas looking into rebuilding the home at 77 Clifton Court, which burned on Jan. 7.

“We’re talking with the insurance company now,” he said. “Our plans is to take it down the foundation and then rebuild. Hopefully we’ll be able to start that project soon.”

State retirement resolution

Hardesty also read a resolution from the Kentucky League of Cities to support reform for the County Employees Retirement System (CERS), which is a primary concern for the state legislature during the 2013 session.

The proposed changes supported by KLC include a hybrid 401(k) program in which the state guarantees a 4 percent return for employee investors. The current fixed pension system is underfunded by about 40 percent because the state has failed to meet its portion of the necessary funding while in turn requiring counties, cities and state entities participating in the fund to increase their portions each year. During the past several years, to try to make up the under-funded years, the state has started to require those entities to pay higher amounts.

Council member Donna Eaton questioned whether or not the council should put its support behind the resolution, which takes no action but only shows support. She questioned if the KLC had “looked into fixing the old plan.”

The resolution passed, 4-1, with Eaton voting against and council member Mike Zoeller absent.

Also at the meeting, the council:

  • Heard a proclamation naming Feb. 18-22 as Earthquake Awareness Week.
  • Heard a report from Emergency Management Service Manager Paul Whitman that all agencies in the county have met the FCC’s mandate requiring a radio frequency change to a narrow bandwidth.
  • Heard in a report from Public Works Director/City Engineer Jennifer Herrell that department’s brining efforts before a snowfall two weeks ago had been successful. “Every road we brined was good, and all the ones we didn’t we had to go back and salt,” she said. “So if anyone has doubted or wondered if it [brining] works, that was proof.”
  • Was thanked by Eilene Collins for the city’s help with the Main Street conference last month.
  • Heard in a report from Fire Chief Willard Tucker that the refurbishment of his department’s aerial truck is on schedule and that a newly purchased tanker truck should also be ready soon. “We expect to have it back by the end of March or first of April,” Tucker said.