Whitesburg KY

Jenkins waterline project nears last phase — finally

When construction begins on the fifth phase of the Jenkins waterline project, it will mark the culmination of an effort that began in the early part of the century and has carried through the administrations of four mayors.

At the February meeting of the Jenkins City Council, Mayor Todd Depriest told the council that the completion of Phase V will mark the end of major waterline replacement, although there will still be the need to replace some older lines and, he added, line breaks will sometimes take place, even in the newest lines.

Paul Nesbitt, whose company Nesbitt Engineering has worked with the city throughout the waterline replacement work, told the council that construction has been held up because the contractor, Ronnie Mullins and Sons of Elkhorn City, is having a difficult time getting the necessary supplies for the project. He said a number of factors, including COVID-19, have hampered its ability to get the material it needs. However, Mullins and Sons is still cleaning up the work it did on the Marshalls Branch waterline project and putting the finishing touches on the work there.

Nesbitt said that the Highway 805 bridge project has been moved back to the summer. The project is funded by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and the city’s responsibility will include moving water and sewer lines that run under the two bridges in city limits on Highway 805. He also told the council it will need to pass a resolution to accept funding for the sidewalk project that will extend the existing sidewalk from the Jenkins football field to the highway across from Jenkins High School. Funding will come from the Safe Routes to Schools, a project of the U.S. Department of Transportation, in a $200,000 grant. Depriest said it will be a great relief when the 14-year long struggle to get the sidewalk finished finally becomes reality.

City Attorney Randall Tackett, who is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Dave Zegeer Coal and Railroad Museum, gave the year-end report for the museum. Tackett said the financial report was not in the packet he received, but the income for the museum is down slightly due to the museum gift shop being closed for COVID-19 for several months. He also said the building that houses the museum will need a new roof. Tackett said the board had contacted the Kentucky Heritage Council about the possibility of getting a metal roof, but the council said the existing shingle roof should be replaced with a similar one.

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