Letcher County’s animal control efforts came under fire this week from the City of Whitesburg.
Frustrated by the lack of response from the Letcher County Animal Control Office, Whitesburg Mayor James. W. Craft said calling the county dog warden was a “waste of the cost of a phone call.”
Craft’s comment came Tuesday night after Whitesburg City Councilman John Williams asked Craft if the city had received any complaints about stray dogs.
In its regular May meeting that was otherwise most notable for its brevity, the city council learned that its water projects are going well.
Kevin Howard of Summit Engineering told the council the Solomon Road project is now complete, and the council voted to close out the Appalachian Regional Commission grant that paid for the project by authorizing payments to H20 Construction of $54,971.14 and to project engineers Summit Engineering of $5,308.73.
Whitesburg Water Maintenance Director Chris Caudill told the council that water pressure at the top of Solomon Road has increased from 6 PSI to 47 PSI, and said the residents are very pleased with the results of the work.
Howard also told the council that he has asked the Kentucky Division of Water to fast track the city’s permit to extend six-inch water lines in the Upper Bottom neighborhood to replace old fourinch lines. Caudill said the plan for the current work is to replace lines down Kentucky Avenue to Frazier Avenue.
Craft said the project is part of a plan to replace all the lines in the Upper Bottom with six-inch lines and loop them so no one has dirty water from being on the end of the line. Howard also said the state is deliberating on how the remainder of the funding for the work can be spent.
Paul Nesbitt of Nesbitt Engineering reported that a preconstruction meeting with H2O Construction will be held May 15 for the city’s raw water intake project. Nesbitt Engineering will be represented by Mark Fibus, who has worked with the City of Jenkins on a number of projects.
Caudill reported that the motor on the high service pump at the city water plant went down and said he has ordered a rebuilt motor that should be in soon. Caudill said the rebuilt motor was about half the $9,858 price of a new one and had about the same warranty. Caudill also said a pump at a lift station near West Whitesburg Elementary School went down and will have to be replaced. Caudill said he expects the new pump to be in and installed by Friday.
Craft told the council he had nothing to report, but did express his appreciation of the work Caudill and workers at the city water department have done since the city terminated its contract for water and sewer services with Veolia.
“Since Veolia left, we have relied heavily on Caudill,” said Craft. “He has done a tremendous job and we appreciate it more than you know.”