The Richmond City Commission moved Tuesday evening to hire a “Business License Associate” who will search for unlicensed businesses.
Unlicensed businesses evade the city’s 2-percent net profits tax, and their employees do not pay the 2-percent payroll tax, officials have said.
Becky L. Randall was hired at a salary of $30,000 and would be ready to start work the next day, City Manager Jimmy Howard told the commission before the vote.
Randall was chosen from a large number of good applicants, several of whom were interviewed, Howard said. She will be supervised by city Finance Director Sharon Cain.
City Commissioner Jason Morgan voted against the hire, saying he had no objection to the candidate but was opposed to creating the position.
As part of a stepped-up effort to collect all the revenue it is due, the city commission has already hired an audit clerk to review the payments of licensed businesses.
Also Tuesday, the commission approved final reading of a revision to the city’s business-license ordinance. It allows non-profit festival promoters, including the city tourism department, to buy a single license for an event instead of requiring licenses of individual vendors. Morgan also voted against this measure.
Tourism Director Lori Murphy-Tatum reported that the city’s renamed Great American Festival and Kids Fest had a record number of vendors and perhaps its greatest visitor turnout. Inclement weather Saturday morning had cleared by mid afternoon, she said, and the weather was near-perfect on Sunday, contributing to the large number of visitors.
The commission unanimously approved three other ordinances for which it heard first reading at a called meeting one week earlier.
The city’s Sunday drink-sales ordinance was revised to clarify that restaurants licensed to serve alcoholic beverages on Sundays need not close at 9 p.m., only stop serving them at that hour.
The clarification had been requested by Tom Thilman, co-owner of Madison Garden, who also had asked that drink sales be allowed until 1 a.m., the same as the other six nights of the week.
Until the Richmond Register reported on the issue, most people in the city were unaware that drinks could not be served after 9 p.m. on Sundays, he said.
Thilman asked the commission to give a reason for not extending the hours, such as increased policing costs. Wanting downtown to “look like a ghost town” on Sunday nights also would be a reason, he said, but not a good one.
At the meeting’s conclusion, Commissioner Robert Blythe, who had voted five years earlier against allowing Sunday drink sales, said his vote to clarify the ordinance was not inconsistent with his previous vote.
Regretting that Thilman had already left the meeting, Blythe said he was unaware of any other requests, except Thilman’s, for later drink sales on Sundays. Blythe, also the pastor of a downtown church, said he resented Thilman’s assertions that “the voters deserve better” from the commission on this issue.
Other ordinances approved will:
• Require developers to include 0.8 acres of recreational green space for every eight subdivision homes or eight apartment bedrooms. Previously, only planned-unit developments (PUDs) were required to provide recreational green space, said Planning Director Jason Hart.
• Allow developers to use only letters of credit instead of performance bonds to guarantee proper completion of developments. The ordinance also would prevent companies with officers or directors who were part of a firm that had failed to comply with development regulations from starting new developments.
• Accept streets in Jergee Place and Briarwood Estates into the city’s transportation network.
The commission voted to hire Wanda Bailey as the city manager’s administrative assistant at a salary of $30,000. Bailey was chosen from 32 applicants, seven of whom were interviewed, Howard said.
In other personnel
• Accepted the resignation of Lamar Ross from the information technology department, who Howard said was leaving for a better-paying job
• Accepted the retirement of Ray Stivers, who had been employed by the parks department.
Bill Robinson can be reached at brobinson@
or at 624-6690.
- Local News
Madison County Fair paid admissions total 10,000 by Tuesday
Approximately 10,000 people had purchased tickets to the Madison County Fair by Tuesday evening, Billy Tudor, fair board president said Wednesday morning.
The count does not include Sunday’s Family Fun Day, which offered free admission, Tudor said.
Babies, toddlers crowned at Madison County Fair
Airport getting $600,000 in federal funds
On July 14, Gov. Steve Beshear announced the Madison Airport and the Eastern Kentucky University aviation program would be receiving $1.1 million for expanded and improved facilities.
On Wednesday, U.S. Rep. Andy Barr, R-Sixth District, announced the airport also would benefit from $600,000 in Federal Aviation Administration funds.
Veggies going on the grill Saturday
The Madison County Farmers Market will demonstrate Saturday that fresh garden vegetables can go on the grill as well as in a salad.
The Madison County Extension Service staff, along with members of the extension homemakers clubs, will be on hand to show market customers how tasty grilled vegetables can be, said Gina Noe, extension agent for family and consumer sciences.
Stumbo says McConnell ‘handpicked’ leader of coal association
Democratic Speaker of the House Greg Stumbo said Wednesday there’s an obvious reason the president of the Kentucky Coal Association has publicly defended Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell’s support of the coal industry.
Berea utility doubles solar farm, again
Berea Municipal Utilities started its solar farm in October 2011 with 60 panels. In less that five days, all were leased.
Another 60, which became operational in June 2012, were leased in less than four months.
Now, the farm again has doubled, with the addition of 126 panels that are ready for leasing, said Steve Boyce, a retired Berea College professor who has been involved with the program since its inception.
My fair ladies
10th Quilt Extravaganza is Friday, Saturday
Displays of quilts by men, baby quilts, the Grandmother’s Flower Garden pattern, an exhibit of feed sack fabric, ongoing demonstrations, and a vendors market are features of the 10th Berea Quilt Extravaganza Friday and Saturday at Berea Community School off Ellipse Street.
RPD: Heroin sales lead to trafficking indictment
Executing a warrant issued after Samantha Frederick, 29, Northgate Drive, was indicted July 16 by a Madison County grand jury, Richmond Police arrested her Monday on drug trafficking charges.
YMCA, county district to provide after-school care
The Telford YMCA is partnering with the Madison County School District to provide after-school child care for kindergarten and elementary students.
YMCA Executive Director Dave Wallace and Madison County School Superintendent Elmer Thomas announced the partnership Monday afternoon.
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- Madison County Fair paid admissions total 10,000 by Tuesday