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Campbell Co. Fires Planner, Debates Raises for Newer Employees

The Campbell County Fiscal Court exited for executive session mid-meeting on Wednesday night, and when the meeting resumed a few minutes later, it was announced that the county's principal planner had been fired. Judge/Executive Steve Pendery did not name the individual. Details of the discussions that take place in executive session remain secret, therefore, no reason was given publicly for the termination. The County will immediately seek a replacement for the position.

In other news from the meeting in Alexandria on Wednesday, the county has been given more than $98,000 to re-pave Eight-Mile Road as part of the Rural Secondary Roads Program Funds provided by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. 

County Commissioner Charlie Coleman voted against giving two County employees raises because he believes that the pay increase was beyond the kinds of raises typically given in the private sector. Coleman calculated that the salary increase for Tax Compliance Manager Brett Bercham was a little over 10 percent, and that Road Supervisor Luke Mantle was near that percentage as well.

Judge Pendery explained that there had been significant turnover in the county administration of late and that many younger employees replaced individuals who had worked for the county for some time. The new workers were paid less than their counterparts until they proved themselves in their roles and warranted the same pay rate as their predecessors.

“What we're really doing here is an adjustment that gets made with that philosophy and that approach taken for these positions,” Pendery said.

Commissioners Brian Painter and Tom Lampe voted for the raises, which, combined with Pendery's vote, allowed the salary increases to take place.

Lampe said that Jack Moreland of Southbank Partners informed him that the Kentucky State Route 9 project is moving forward and that the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet has closed on the Kentucky Motor Service building as well as the Victoria Square Apartments in Newport and that the demolition of those properties should be completed by May 1.

“The project is gaining traction,” he said.

Lampe also said that he was given access to see the new $7 million expansion of the Campbell County Detention Center which is under construction, and he reported that the project has made major progress. He said that the freezing conditions during the first part of January had delayed some parts of the construction but that all other parts are progressing as planned.

The new facility will house 108 beds and 32 isolation cells.

Written by Bryan Burke, associate editor