By Nita Johnson
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
Hundreds of new jobs have popped up in the Laurel community over recent months, and that trend is continuing.
The latest job availabilities will be through an expansion project at ABC Automotive, which will offer another 100 jobs.
The Laurel County Fiscal Court did their duties to ensure that expansion occurs, approving a letter of support for the automotive plant during last week’s regular monthly meeting. ABC Automotive is located in the Vaughn Ridge Industrial Park off west Ky. 80 in the Swiss Colony community.
While industrial growth is spurting in the area, magistrates are always challenged to upgrade and expand the equipment for the county’s road systems. Through a unanimous motion, magistrates authorized Judge Executive David Westerfield to purchase a Caterpillar 316 EL excavator under the state contract. The excavator is a hydraulic model with attachments that will benefit the road department in their endeavors to maintain county road projects.
District 4 magistrate Jeff Book and District 5 magistrate Billy Oakley were appointed on a committee to consider taking Chips Lane and Les Hubbard Road extensions into the county road system, while approvals were made for Logan Lane in District 1, Twin Trails Road in District 4, Corvette Drive in District 5 and Awawam Lane in District 3.
Westerfield addressed the court, stating that Swiss Colony Volunteer Fire Department Chief Gary Wilkerson had been appointed as president of the Alliance of Laurel County Fire Departments. Wilkerson replaces long-time Keavy Fire Chief and Alliance President Ronnie Bales, who died last month after battling cancer. Wilkerson reportedly is the next longest term member of the Fire Alliance after Bales.
In other actions, magistrates:
• Re-appointed Dennis Minton to the East Laurel Water District Commission
• Approved the Laurel County Sheriff’s audit for fiscal year ending Dec. 31, 2013
• Approved the 2014 budget and order setting the maximum salaries for deputy clerks in the County Clerk’s office
• Approved bylaws of the Kentucky Hazardous Materials Response Team
• Approved the Laurel County Water Location and Recovery Plan
• Approved the Point of Destination Operations Guide
• Approved the Laurel County Emergency Operations Plan, all of which fall under the Emergency Management and Public Safety department duties.