By HAWKINS TEAGUE
Source: Murray Ledger & Times
The Murray City Council unanimously passed a resolution Thursday in support of state legislative approval of House Bill 1, known as LIFT (Local Investments for Transformation).
Mayor Jack Rose said the bill would allow for Kentucky residents to vote on a local option sales tax for specific community projects. He said it would allow for a limited-time sales tax up to 1 cent, but the amount could be less than that. Rose said one aspect he liked about the proposed legislation is that if voters choose to have a local option sales in their community, the tax would not only go toward a specific project, but it would also have an pre-determined end date. He said he thought the bill was a good example of what “home rule” or “local control” ought to be about.
Rose said State Rep. Kenny Imes, a Murray Republican representing the 5th District, had requested that the council take a position on the bill, which would require a constitutional amendment. If the bill were approved, legislators would then have to write the rules for how local option elections would be implemented, Rose said. Councilman Dan Miller pointed out that voters could only approve constitutional amendments in even years. Rose said he believed that was right, so the earliest the amendment could be on the ballot would be November 2016.
In other business:
• The council voted 11-1 to pass the first reading of an ordinance to rezone the property located at 1410 Poplar Street from R-4 (multi-family residential) to B-1 (neighborhood business). Miller voted no, stating that he had seen a lot of “zoning creep” over the years, and he did not want to see Poplar Street turn into a business street.
• The council passed the first reading of an ordinance zoning 27.74 acres owned by Stephen and Erika Compton east of Falwell Estates and north of Wiswell Road as Agriculture.
• The council passed the first reading of an ordinance enacting and adopting a supplement to the city’s Code of Ordinances.
• The council passed the second reading of an ordinance annexing into the city limits 13.235 acres owned by Westside Baptist Church, 0.918 acres owned by the City of Murray, and a 2.417-acre portion of Calloway County roadway along Robertson Road South. It also passed the second reading of an ordinance the Westside Baptist Church property and the county roadway as R-2 (single family residential) and the city property as Government.
• The council passed the second reading of an ordinance amending the annual budget to appropriate Special Fund Sources for the amount of $1 million in Community Development Block Grant funds.
• In the mayor’s report, Rose said the meeting he had set up with the Kentucky Division of Water for this week to talk about the city’s wastewater treatment plant project had to be postponed until next week. He also talked about setting up a meeting – possibly an all-day retreat – in which he and the city’s Long Range Planning Committee could talk about their goals and priorities.