In Taylor Mill, Postmarked Tax Bills Discussed, McDonald's Sold, Stoplights Sought
Taylor Mill Mayor Dan Bell asked the City Commission to consider changing the policy on city tax collection so that next year tax bills that are postmarked on December 31 but arrive at the Taylor Mill City Building later than that can be accepted as "on time". Bell said that Kenton County, the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and the United States Federal Government all accept postmarked bills as being on time and that he wanted to align Taylor Mill with the other tiers of government in that way.
Commissioner Dan Murray, who worked as a U.S. Post Office letter carrier for 40 years, pointed out how many agencies have their own postmark and that just because a letter is postmarked for a certain day doesn't necessarily get mailed that day.
Taylor Mill City Administrator Jill Bailey said that the current policy stipulates that all tax bills must be received by the City by 5 p.m. on December 31 or the bills are considered late and a 15-percent penalty is automatically added to the bill. Bailey said that there were about 45 to 50 properties that had postmarked letters for December 31 but arrived in January.
Murray said that if the City adopted a new policy of allowing postmarked bills despite their tardy arrival, that some in the community will find a way to take advantage of the policy.
“It'd be opening up a can of worms,” Murray said at Wednesday night's meeting. Commissioners Debby Kreimborg and Roger Reis both agreed with Murray that a policy change could lead some to manipulate the proposed policy.
Bailey said that there were still about $100,000 worth of outstanding tax payments by Taylor Mill residents that the city has not yet collected.
Mayor Bell asked city staff to check what nearby cities of comparable size do in terms of their postmark policy to see how it stacks up with Taylor Mill. The issue was agreed to be put away until August when the city will reexamine its tax policies.
Other notes from the city commission meeting:
The city intends to open up bidding for contracts to put up 50 new streetlights along Kentucky 16 and into the business district. The city has selected a fixture it will use and hopes to have the project finished in the spring. It was explained that the City has adhered to all of the new regulations that are required by the State and expect to obtain a permit to move forward with light installation quickly.
The State will not approve a traffic light at the intersection of Old Taylor Mill Road and Honey Drive until the construction to KY Highway 16 is complete. Because it is a State effort, Taylor Mill cannot hurry the completion or projects involved with the road.
The City would also like to see a stoplight at Pride Parkway and Wayman Branch, mainly due to the amount of school busses that pass through there. It too must wait until KY 16 has been completed before the City can move forward with traffic safety measures it sees fit to implement.
Mayor Bell announced a plan the City has to replace all of the street signs along the main corridor of Taylor Mill. The signs that were replaced will be used in other parts of the city.
The Fire Department said it saw 707 emergency runs last year which is 10 percent increase from 2013.
The Fire Department also has a job openings for a full-time staff member and two part-time employees.
The February 11 City Commission meeting has been changed to Wednesday, February 4.
Commissioner Kreimborg is already excited for the first Tasty Tuesday where a Taylor Mill eatery is featured each week, beginning May 19. The first featured restaurant will be Marco's Pizza.
The Police Department is using software called TraxPro that monitors how many drivers pass through a particular road and at what speeds. The effort comes from an attempt to determine what the speed limit should be once KY 16 is completed. Taylor Mill Police Chief Steve Knauf said that typically speed limits are set at the speed that 85 percent of the drivers that travel a particular route are going. He said that drivers travel at an average of 38 miles per hour, but he said that he has heard that the State may be recommending 45 mph as the speed limit.
The United States Department of Justice certified Patrick Reis of the Taylor Mill Police Department as having completed the general course of instruction afforded by the FBI National Academy.
“I appreciate the City Commission for giving the chance to go to this,” Reis said of the FBI Academy. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. My understanding is that less than two percent of police officers in the world ever get to do something like this.”
Taylor Mill Police Officer Mike Lyons received an award from Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear for Impaired Driving Enforcement.
The McDonald's in Taylor Mill has been sold to the Groen Family who now operates 14 McDonald's restaurants in Northern Kentucky.
Story & photos by Bryan Burke, associate editor