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Erlanger Honors Long-Serving Employees, Prepares for Underpass Rehab

Erlanger City Engineer Jim Viox announced Tuesday night that the northbound ramp to I-75 and I-275 will close for several weeks starting July 8 as part of a larger repair project that will go on through October.

City Council voted to allow the city to send an application to the Kenton County Planning Commission to add funeral homes to the R-1C zone as a conditional use. There is a church on Turkeyfoot Road for sale and a funeral home wants to buy the property. Gary Meyer was the only council member to oppose.

Council passed the second reading of an ordinance amending rules for handicapped parking. The pertinent changes are that the filing fee of $65 has been done away with and the fee for putting up the sign will be $100. Also, the applicant does not have to physically come in each year to renew the parking as it can be renewed over the phone.

An updated rental property permit ordinance was approved and is more restrictive, but the most significant change is the institution of a registry for all landlords so that there is always a way to contact them in case of emergency.

A resolution was passed which approved the execution of a municipal aid co-op program contract between the city and the Commonwealth of Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. The money allotted for Erlanger totals $355,951.97, a little more than the city expected.

A municipal order declaring five items surplus property was passed by council, and another municipal order allows Mayor Tyson Hermes to enter into an agreement for a feasibility  study with Boone County for a park to be built and maintained by Boone County near the Cherry Hill subdivision. The city's portion of the feasibility study costs $5,000.

Engineer Jim Viox told council that they received three bids for the concrete removal and replacement on Riggs Avenue. He recommended the low bid of $366,402 from Straight Edge, since the bid was lower than the city had estimated, and council agreed.

Mayor Tyson Hermes gave a report on the sidewalk on Nelson Road, saying he and two others went door to door, and because they listened to the concerns of the residents, they made changes in the sidewalk plan. However, the money isn't available yet, so the city will focus on getting the easements signed so the project can go forward as soon as the money is available.

Anne Elzyk, of Division Street, came to refute the arguments put forth at the committee meeting about having chickens in the city. She said the predators, such as coyotes and snakes, were already here because of the deer population, and people who care to take on the responsibility of chickens will keep their coops in good condition. Council tabled the issue for now.

City Administrator Marc Fields gave an update on the complaints that the city received last year about code violations. He said of the 443 calls, 221 citations were issued, and of those, 124 were remediated, leaving 98 to go to the final stage, which he stated was a good record. He also said that the city hired a new part-time code officer.

Engineer Jim Viox explained that city staff wants to get started on the project of painting and fixing the railroad underpass. The project will be going out to bid, and Mayor Hermes said the city hopes to stay under the estimated $250,000; $150,000 for painting the steel and fixing the concrete that is falling down, and $100,000 for  the drainage issue which makes the sidewalk underneath a thick muddy mess.

Mitch Hatfield, from Hummel Hatfield insurance Agency, came to introduce himself in the business spotlight.

Several people received service awards. Andy Ifcic received a-20 year pin from the Fire/EMS, and Joe Kappa from Fire and EMS received a five year pin. Pat Collura from the Police department received his 25-year pin, Kim Klare was honored for 15 years, Aaron McNeil for 5 years, and Shirley Peck for 5 years.

Tanner Schmidt was sworn in as a firefighter/EMT while his fiancee held the bible and his family looked on proudly.

Story & photos by Patricia A. Scheyer, RCN contributor

Top photo: Andy Ifcic receives his 20-year pin

Slideshow Images & Captions: 
Joe Kappa received his 5-year service pin.