Fiscal court cracking down on illegal dumps across the county

Illegal dumping and delinquent garbage bills took center stage at the Harlan County Fiscal Court’s regular monthly meeting on Jan. 15.

Harlan County Judge-Executive Dan Mosley said the Solid Waste Enforcement division of the Fiscal Court, in cooperation with the Harlan County Sheriff’s Office, has been actively investigating illegal dumping activity throughout the county. And the results are beginning to show.

Cameras have been deployed to hot spots for illegal dumping throughout Harlan County to gather evidence against those responsible for the dumping. Mosley said the cameras have been a great help in building cases against those responsible.

“We have photographs of vehicles and license plate numbers,” Mosley said. “That really helps build our case against those who are dumping illegally.”

Mosley said he hoped that increased prosecution of those caught dumping illegally would act as a deterrent to others.

Delinquent garbage bills have also been a problem, according to Mosley. While the overall collections rate of paying garbage customers has increased to around 84 percent, the county still has many people who are delinquent on their bill for garbage service or who simply have not subscribed for garbage service.

“It isn’t fair to the majority of citizens who already pay a garbage pickup bill to have to carry the burden of those who don’t. We need to get everyone on a level playing field.” he said.

Mosley reminded the Fiscal Court that citizens are bound by ordinance to subscribe to garbage service and those who are either delinquent on paying bills for garbage service or have chosen not to subscribe to garbage service are subject to criminal charges. Mosley said the Fiscal Court was willing to work out payment schedules for those in default on garbage service.

“We will work with anyone wishing to work out a payment plan to try to get their account current,” he said.

Citizens are encouraged to report illegal dumping to the Harlan County Solid Waste Department at 606-573-9423 or the Harlan County Judge-Executive’s Office at 606-573-2600. Those people who are either delinquent on a garbage bill or who wish to subscribe to service should contact the Harlan County Solid Waste Department.

In other business, the Fiscal Court:

• Approved a lease agreement between the county and Magnum Hunter Production Inc. for property and buildings located at Coldiron.

• Approved an agreement with Bell Engineering for services related to the Putney Landfill.

• Approved the sheriff’s fourth quarter financial report.

• Voted to accept the sheriff’s office statement of receipts, disbursements, and excess fees for calendar year 2018, subject to audit.

• Approved a four-year lease between the county and Wallins Volunteer Fire Department on property located in Wallins.

• Approved an agreement with Harp Enterprises for election services.

• Approved a contract between the Commonwealth of Kentucky and the county for FY 2019 SAR Rescue Aid Fund.

• Allowed permission to apply for Kentucky Board of Emergency Medical Services Ground Ambulance Grant.

• Approved advertising for bids for portable restroom rentals, and diesel/gasoline

• Reappointed Charles Hyde to the Black Mountain Utility District Board for a four-year term.

• Reappointed Travis Cox and Preston McLain to the Harlan County Economic Development Authority for a four-year term.

• Reappointed Denver Pollitte to the Airport Board for a four-year term.

• Reappointed Jim Vicini, Bill Branham, Ronnie Cox, Don Disney, Fred Dixon, Marcus Johnson and Ed Leisge to the Sleepy Hollow Golf Course Board for a four-year term.

• Reappointed Polly McLain, Stephen Foster, Drenda Crider and Lucille Sturgill to the Harlan County Tourist and Convention Commission for a four-year term.

• Reappointed Annie Fox, Linda Parsons, Sue Estep, Brenda Gergely and Stephanie Chitwood to the Animal Shelter Advisory Board for a four-year term.

• Accepted the following reports: County Treasurer, Animal Control, Roads/Bridges, Recycling/Solid Waste, PRIDE, Inmate Work Program, Solid Waste Enforcement, and Flood Plain.

Regular monthly meetings of the Harlan County Fiscal Court are held on the third Tuesday of the month at 10 a.m. on the second floor of the Harlan County Courthouse. Meetings are open to the public and citizens are encouraged to attend.