The state’s Secretary of Transportation, Greg Thomas, spoke at the fiscal court meeting Thursday and gave comments about the future of the District Highway office in Manchester.

Thomas told the court that the cabinet is still looking at land in Clay County to construct a new building but had not found anything within their budget.

“We are still looking at properties,” he said.  “We can’t find any within our budget, but it’s not out of sight for the future.”

District 11 Chief Highway District Engineer Mike Calebs accompanied Thomas and spoke to the court about the progress of projects within the county such as the Memorial Drive project and the five lane highway on US 421 through Garrard.

“We fully expect to have a letting on the US 421 road project in August,” Calebs told the court.

School superintendent William Sexton spoke to the court about a road/bridge wash out on Elk Creek that had left a new school bus stranded at the driver’s home.

“We are now entering day 46 of being unable to use this bus,” he told the court while asking them for relief on the road.  

County attorney Joe White gave the court two options to proceed in on adopting the road into the county road system.  Both options come with a lengthy process that will leave the bus parked and unusable for the remainder of the school year.

The court did agree to consider adopting the road.  But, in the meantime, several homes off the road have no fire or emergency medical services due to the situation.

Doug Bowling, one of the landowners in the area of the road, said the roadway had been used by the public for over 50 years that he could remember.

The court did agree to meet on the issue again in coming weeks.

In other news from the meeting, Coroner Jared Becknell talked to the court about how they wanted to proceed in handling indigent death cases in the future.

“We previously had been cremating those that have no relatives or caretakers to take care of this situation once an individual has passed,” he said.  “We currently have a case right now that may fall into this category so we need to discuss how to proceed.”

The court agreed to secure bids for this service from funeral homes.

Jailer Linda Smallwood brought some good news to the court as she presented County Judge-Executive Johnny Johnson with a check for $50,000 from excess fees from the jail’s commissary account.

“We deeply appreciate this Linda and we will put the money to good use in helping our people,” county judge-executive Johnny Johnson said.

The court also agreed to appoint former CCHS principal Mike White to the public library board.

Judge Johnson also announced that the court had been given property and a building on Island Creek.

Publisher, The Manchester Enterprise

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