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US 27 Smart Corridor Project Moves Forward with County Approval

The Campbell County Fiscal Court approved a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for the proposed US 27 Smart Corridor that would stretch from Newport on the Levee to Northern Kentucky University.

It includes the county and the cities of Newport, Southgate, Fort Thomas, and Highland Heights.

All the cities have agreed to cooperate, as well.

The smart corridor is designed to decrease traffic congestion, improve transit, increase transportation options, and create safer sidewalks while also protecting bike lanes to accommodate tech- and entertainment-friendly environments.

Campbell County Progress Authority President Will Weber explained that the project is currently seeking grant funding for which it would be more competitively positioned now that it has buy-in from the five governments and their populations.

Weber said that this is still an early stage, but steps have to be taken in order to provide a strong foundation for the project.

Commissioners voted to accept the tax rate for the Northern Kentucky Health Distirct. George Moore, director of administration and accounting, presented the ad valorem tax rate as $2.63 per $100 of assessed value, a rate that is $0.23 higher than last year. He said that rate is what is required after seeking grants and other methods of obtaining funds. Moore stated that the rate will provide $1.8 million in tax revenue and help the department deal with the pension crisis.  

Chris Lauer was promoted to police sergeant, and his son pinned the new badge on his dad.  His family was on hand for the ceremony.

Also promoted from grade 7 to grade 8 but not present were William McGohan, Douglas Holt, Alex Turner, and Steve Kush. Geoff Lucas was promoted from grade 6 to grade 7.

Commissioner Geoff Besecker told the court that the police department has purchased a special speed-detecting device that is different from its old detector in that it is more technologically advanced and can also store the data so police can have a better idea of the traffic and speeding patterns. The county is planning to sell the old speed detector.

Commissioner Tom Lampe spoke about the county being one of five recipients of a federal grant for rehabbing homes in Newport. The amount received was $804,000.

Written by Patricia A. Scheyer, RCN contributor