LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
The London City Council welcomed its newest member, Jim Hays, during the first meeting of the new year.
Hays beat out long-serving, incumbent Sharon Benge by 85 votes during the November election.
Hays asked several questions Monday night. His goal, he said, is to make better informed decisions about agenda items.
Mayor Troy Rudder introduced a review on the current alcohol ordinance, possibly "loosening" up the entertainment segment. The original ordinance does not allow for karaoke or dancing in restaurants that serve alcohol within the city limits. The ordinance has not been changed since 2005.
Rudder appointed a committee to review the ordinance and consider options. The committee is composed of Rudder, council members Judd Weaver, Nancy Vaughn and London Police Chief Stewart Walker, who is the city's alcohol enforcement officer.
The committee is expected to report back to the city council in February to discuss revisions.
City Attorney Larry Bryson gave a second reading to the ordinance of a voluntary annexation of 19.4 acres into the corporate city limits. The land was voluntary annexed by the Laurel County Board of Education who, years prior, had attempted to annex the land but because of improper GPS data. It was not accepted by the state. Today, the land located at the intersection of Ky. 472, the Daniel Boone Parkway and North Laurel Middle School is now inside city limits.
Also approved by the council:
• A 90-day extension on the vacant property of Doug Benge located on Fourth Street across from the Christian Shelter for the Homeless. The extension will allow for improvements to be made to the property that Benge expects to be open when complete for a commercial business.
• The bids for the London-Laurel County Rescue Squad's newest marine sonar equipment totaling $46,000. A portion of the cost, $37,500, will be paid through state homeland security grants. The City of London and Laurel County will pay the difference of approximately $8,000.
• The agreement to continue the specifications to make the London Regional Recycling Center a regional facility. The recycling center is open to Laurel County, Rockcastle County and Manchester, Ky.
• A walk to fund the Laurel London Optimist Club and Camp L.E.A.P. on April, 27, 2013.
• The City of London will host their Fourth of July celebration on Saturday, June 29.