The Richmond Register

Local News

May 18, 2013

Exit 95 rebuild delayed until 2017

RICHMOND — Originally scheduled for 2014, the reconstruction of Exit 95 on Interstate 75 won’t take place until 2017, Madison Judge/Executive Kent Clark told a joint meeting of the Richmond and Berea chambers of commerce Friday.

The state Transportation Cabinet is delaying the project, Clark said, until a decision is made on the proposed highway that would run from Exit 95 to Nicholasville.

Although state and federal project managers will be announcing four possible connector routes this summer, the no-build option is still on the table.If built, the connector would have a large impact on the interchange, Clark said.

The judge/executive, who traditionally delivers an upbeat state of the county address to the chambers, started with good news.

“Things are good; things are excellent,” Clark began, telling the audience the county will end the fiscal year next month with a balanced budget for the 20th consecutive year.

But, the audience audibly gasped when he said the Exit 95 project would be delayed.

News about the exit wasn’t all bad, however. The state recently awarded a $1 million contract to rebuild the road from Exit 95 to White Hall State Historic Site, which is adjacent to a county park.

The new road also will include a 10-foot wide walking/biking path, bringing to six miles the length of walk/bike trails around the park.

Completion of the Berea Bypass, from US 25 to KY 21 (Big Hill Road), could get started next year, Clark also said, reporting other good news from state transportation officials.

A $550,000 renovation of the Pleasant View House, 80 percent federally funded, at Battlefield Park is expected to start this year.

Although the county has been able to maintain services without raising taxes, governments at all levels, from cities to the federal government, are coming under financial stress, Clark said.

Because of its quality of life, Madison will continue to be one of Kentucky’s fastest growing counties, the judge/executive said. But, as the general population grows, so does the jail population.

That is making the detention center perhaps county government’s greatest challenge, he said.

The 192-bed facility routinely houses more than 275 inmates. That number often includes state prisoners for whom the county is paid more than the daily cost of their upkeep. When a jail’s population exceeds capacity by more than 25 percent, however, the state begins moving its prisoners to other counties. Then the county loses that income.

Without jail expansion, only local prisoners will be in the county jail two years from now, costing the tax payers at least $1.6 million annually. In four years, even local prisoners are projected to overfill the facility, and the county will have to pay other detention centers to house its prisoners. That would push the county’s incarceration expenses more than $2.5 million beyond current costs, Clark said.

The county is studying the construction of a 100 to 150-bed facility on the site of the demolished Miller Building next to the jail, the judge/executive said.

Another future problem is funding the county’s consolidated 911 emergency calling system. It is being financed primarily by a $3.50 monthly fee on landline telephones. However, the number of those has dwindled to only 22,000. Locally based cells phones are charged only a 70-cent monthly 911 fee.

“Is it fair,” Clark asked, for landline phone users to bear the burden of financing the 911 service?

Nearby Garrard and Lincoln counties are attempting to place a fee on water meters to fund their emergency calling systems. That would spread the 911 cost more evenly, the judge/executive said.

Although serving in elective office is “not all peaches and cream,” Clark said he would like to continue being judge for awhile. His term expires in 2014.

In addition to hearing the state of the county address, Friday’s luncheon also was the graduation for Leadership Madison County. That helped swell attendance to record numbers.

The interest in Leadership Madison County and the luncheon attendance both reflect the county’s promising future as well as the optimism of its residents and their desire to be involved, Clark said.

Bill Robinson can be reached at or at 624-6690.

Text Only
Local News
  • 7-27 HeartChase 1.jpg A race to the finish line

    Sheltered by overcast sky and supported by a cool breeze, teams competed Saturday morning in the second annual HeartChase at Richmond Centre.

    July 26, 2014 6 Photos

  • 7-27 Hops 1.jpg Hops & Vine Festival raises money for humane society

    Downtown Richmond’s Hops and Vine Festival started more than two years ago with a question.

    July 26, 2014 3 Photos

  • Bill Clinton will stump for Grimes in eastern Kentucky

    Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes is again calling in the “Big Dog” in her quest to unseat five-term Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell.

    Former President Bill Clinton will join Grimes on Aug. 6 for a campaign rally in eastern Kentucky, according to a campaign official who would provide no further details.

    July 26, 2014

  • 7-26 Stockyards 2.jpg Cattle farmers enjoying ‛perfect storm’

    Demand is up, and cattle are selling for record prices.

    At the same time, corn prices are down and fuel prices have stabilized.

    That adds up to a “perfect storm” for Kentucky cattle farmers, said Gary Kelly of Paint Lick as he ate lunch Friday with his brother Jimmy at the restaurant across from the Blue Grass Stockyards.

    July 26, 2014 5 Photos

  • 7-26 Fire Practice Structure 1.jpg Fire training tower going up

    A new training tower for the Richmond Fire Department is rising on Four Mile Road.

    Construction began Thursday on the four-story, steel-framed structure.

    July 26, 2014 4 Photos

  • Pavement work to restrict I-75 in Rockcastle County

    Beginning Sunday until about the end of November, Interstate 75 in Rockcastle County will be reduced to one lane in each direction between mile points 58 and 66 for pavement work.

    July 26, 2014

  • Jailed woman charged with heroin trafficking

    A Richmond woman already jailed on another charge was served with a drug trafficking warrant Thursday.

    July 26, 2014

  • County’s jobless rate improves

    Madison County’s unemployment rate for June, 6.5 percent, was a full percentage point lower than a year earlier and 0.2 points lower than in May.

    July 24, 2014

  • 7-25 Camp Invention 1.jpg Young inventors turn trash to treasure

    The first day of Camp Invention began with a room full of objects ready to be recycled, Sarah Shaffer, director of the camp said Thursday.

    July 24, 2014 6 Photos

  • 7-25 William Gilbert.jpg Four arrested on meth charges at Berea motel

    Berea Police arrested four people Wednesday at the Knights Inn on Chestnut Street, including a man they said tried to conceal a meth lab on his person.

    July 24, 2014 5 Photos

AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Should Madison County’s three local governing bodies ban smoking in indoor public places?

     View Results