Madison Doyle, photos:
The 2021 Edmonson County Lions Club Fair was back after being cancelled in 2020 due to the pandemic.
Folks came out in large crowds all through Brownsville to watch the parade, which had over 70 participants.
The following were named winners in their respective categories:
**UPDATE 11/25/21 10:46PM: The Edmonson County Sheriff’s Office has officially reported that she has been found safe.**
Edmonson Voice Report:
Madison Lynn "Maddie" Sowders has been reported missing by the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office.
According to authorities, Edmonson County Sheriff's deputies responded to Brownsville Manor Apartments for a report of a runaway 12 year old female on Wednesday, November 24, 2021. The Sheriff's Office stated that Madison Lynn "Maddie" Sowders was last seen by her family going to bed the night of November 23rd.
She was reportedly wearing black sweatpants, a black and camouflage hooded sweatshirt, and is possibly wearing white tennis shoes. She is approximately 5 foot 4 inches tall, is 105 pounds, has brown eyes and brown shoulder length hair.
Sowders has been missing as early as 10:30 pm on November 23rd. Anyone with any information in this case is urged to contact Edmonson County Dispatch at 270-597-2729 or your local authorities.
Our office will be closed on Thursday, November 25th until Monday morning, November 29th for the Thanksgiving holiday.
We want to say Thank YOU for your support of the Edmonson Voice and for allowing us to serve our community. We strongly feel that this is the greatest county in Kentucky and we are thankful to be part of it.
Happy Thanksgiving and God bless you from everyone at the Edmonson Voice.
-Darren Doyle, Founder and Content Director
Edmonson Voice Report: photos submitted:
Two drivers were transported to the hospital earlier this evening after a collision involving a dump truck and a flatbed truck occurred on HWY 259 N, according to the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office.
Emergency personnel responded to the scene just south of Kyrock Elementary tonight around 5PM. According to a sheriff's deputy, Connor Brooks, (20) of Bee Spring was northbound on 259 in a Dodge flatbed truck. The deputy stated that Brooks reported to the deputy that he fell asleep, and as a result, his vehicle crossed the center line and traveled into the path of Leslie "Bo Bo" Roof, of Brownsville, who was southbound in a tri-axle dump truck.
According to the sheriff's deputy, Roof attempted to leave the roadway to avoid the oncoming truck but the two vehicles collided. Each vehicle came to rest off the roadway, the sheriff's deputy stated.
Brooks was transported to the Medical Center by Edmonson EMS for non-life threatening injuries. Roof reportedly refused medical treatment at the scene at first but was later transported to Greenview Hospital, also for non-life threatening injuries.
Traffic was detoured through Kyrock Road and Nolin Dam Road while a portion of 259 N was closed.
Also responding to the scene were the Kyrock and Brownsville Fire Departments, JAWS, and the KY Transportation Cabinet.
Edmonson Voice Report:
Kentucky State Police Post 3 in Bowling Green has been contacted by concerned citizens about a phone scam in our area. Citizens have received calls from someone stating they are with local and state law enforcement and that there is an active warrant for their arrest.
The Kentucky State Police would like to remind everyone to never share your Social Security Number or other personal information online or by phone. Legitimate businesses will never ask you to pay with Apple cards, eBay cards, Google Play cards, or any other prepaid card.
To report a possible scam, please contact 888-432-9257 by phone, or fill out a complaint form online at ag.ky.gov.
No More Testing In Edmonson County: Regional Location To Serve Barren, Simpson, Warren, Allen, Butler, and Edmonson County
Edmonson Voice Report:
On Friday, Governor Andy Beshear and the Kentucky State Police (KSP) announced that the regional driver testing branch in Bowling Green will begin serving Kentuckians who wish to obtain a state driver permit or driver license. The regional branch, located in Bowling Green, will serve residents of Barren, Simpson, Warren, Allen, Butler and Edmonson counties. Residents of these counties should take note of the new regional location in order to make an appointment prior to arrival for a permit, driver or commercial driver license test.
“We appreciate KSP and the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet working together to expand driver licensing services to Kentuckians in Barren, Simpson, Warren, Allen, Butler and Edmonson counties,” said Gov. Beshear. “A local branch makes it easier for our Kentucky families to access the services they need.”
Currently, KSP is offering driver testing at the KYTC Regional Drivers Licensing Office, located at 360 East 8th Avenue, Bowling Green, KY 42101, for residents of Barren, Simpson, and Warren Counties.
Beginning November 22, KSP will offer driver testing services at the KYTC Regional Drivers Licensing Office, located 360 East 8th Avenue, Bowling Green, KY 42101, for residents of Allen, Butler, and Edmonson counties. KSP welcomed Barren, Simpson and Warren county residents at this location on Oct. 25 and the transition went smoothly. The expansion to Allen, Butler and Edmonson counties will complete this regional testing office conversion.
Wednesday, November 17th was the final day for testing in Edmonson County. This decision was made at the state level, not through The Edmonson County Circuit Clerk's Office.
Appointments are available Monday through Friday and can be made online by visiting KSP’s website. Residents must make an appointment prior to arrival for a permit, driver or commercial driver license test.
“One of the benefits of regionalization is increased availability of testing services,” said KSP’s Commander of Driver Testing, Captain Marshall Johnson. “New appointments will be posted daily at 8 a.m., Monday through Friday, and this availability is the product of regionalizing our services.”
KSP is continuing to work with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and Kentucky’s circuit court clerks to open the remaining regional offices statewide by June 30, 2022.
Prior to an appointment, new drivers should prepare for the exam by accessing the only approved Kentucky driver’s manual or through the official KSP mobile app, ‘kspolice’. All driver testing materials can be viewed and downloaded free of charge.
Successful testing applicants will be served the same day by KYTC Driver Licensing Regional Office staff to apply for a permit or license, based on capacity and time of day, without scheduling a separate appointment. The transition of licensing services by KYTC was mandated with passage of House Bill 453 during the 2020 Kentucky General Assembly.
According to KYTC, Kentucky will continue offering the option of a standard driver’s license, but a REAL ID or other form of federally approved identification, such as a passport or military ID, eventually will be needed by people 18 and older for boarding commercial flights and accessing military bases and federal buildings that currently require identification. Federal enforcement is scheduled to begin May 3, 2023.
First-time application for a REAL ID must be made in person at a Driver Licensing Regional office. Specific documentation is required. A list of acceptable documentation and a link to take an interactive quiz that populates a personalized list of documents is available at drive.ky.gov | IDocument Guide.
Fiscal Court Recap: Allowable "Premium Pay" Discussed For County Employees Through Rescue Act Funds
Darren Doyle, story:
A wage increase called Premium Pay, made possible with funds received by the county from the American Rescue Plan Act, was discussed at today's Edmonson County Fiscal Court meeting, which was held virtually.
What essentially would be more like a bonus but categorized as a temporary pay increase, Premium Pay is one of the government-approved purposes for part of the $2.3 million the county will receive from the federal government in COVID-19 relief funds. The county has already received $1.2 million with the rest coming between May and December of 2022.
County Treasurer Tammi Willhite said all neighboring counties are looking to boost county employee pay through the program, which will allow local governments to increase hourly wages up to $13 more per hour or $25K more per employee; however, most counties are looking to increase workers' pay $1 or $2 more per hour.
In today's meeting, Willhite said all workers employed through offices administered by the fiscal court, including sheriff's deputies and office staff, county clerk staff, judge executive office staff, dispatch, parks and rec, transportation officers, litter abatement, and road department workers would be affected; however, no elected official would qualify for any pay increase through Premium Pay, including magistrates, who would make the vote.
Willhite said if magistrates vote to participate in Premium Pay, county workers would see a benefit in their paychecks (retroactively) from the time period of July 2020 to June of 2021, the height of the pandemic, for all hours worked in-person. Time logged in from anyone working from home would not qualify.
The increase is intended to compensate workers for any time or benefits lost during the pandemic.
Other ways that counties can spend their ARPA money include broadband and water infrastructure, equipment, and other uses, many of which have not been made clear to local governments, Judge Executive Wil Cannon said.
"We don't need to be in a hurry for these decisions. We have to make sure the way we spend this money is allowable by the government, otherwise we have to pay it back," he said.
No vote was taken on incorporating Premium Pay today.
In addition to regular county office reports that were given, magistrates also voted to:
The next Edmonson County Fiscal Court meeting is scheduled for Monday, December 13, 2021 at 9AM and will be held virtually.
Edmonson Voice Report:
The U.S. Postal Service is urging local residents to use extra caution on the roadways following an accident that recently occurred involving a mail carrier.
Brownsville Postmaster Sheri Puckett said the accident was the fourth one involving mail carriers along the same local road in the last five years.
"As United States Postal Service employees, it is our honor to serve this community," she said. "We take great pride in providing excellent customer service and delivering essential items throughout Brownsville. With the holiday season approaching, our carriers will have longer days delivering many packages and mail pieces."
"Help keep us safe so we can return home to our families at the end of our workday. Our carriers survived their injuries, but their lives will be forever changed."
Puckett said postal vehicles are marked with signage, flags, and lights.
"Be aware our carriers will make frequent stops along their routes. Brownsville postal carriers want to deliver the holidays for our customers. And I would like to deliver the gift of safety to our employees."
The other driver involved in the recent crash was also seriously injured, according to local officials.
EDMONSON COUNTY FISCAL COURT
NOTICE OF REGULAR AUDIO/VIDEO TELECONFERENCE MEETING
In accordance with KRS 61.823, KRS 61.826, Executive Order 2020-243, OAG 20-05, 2020 Senate Bill 150 and the March 31 Attorney General Advisory, the Edmonson County Fiscal Court will meet in session at 9:00 a.m. on November 22, 2021 to consider the following Agenda. The meeting will take place via audio teleconference due to the current public health situation with the fiscal court not meeting in person. The public may attend via audio by dialing: 1-312-626-6799, meeting ID 857 4235 5692, password 088697 or by going to the following link:
EDMONSON COUNTY JUDGE EXECUTIVE
Darren Doyle, story and photos:
Ryan Quarles, Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner, made a guest appearance at the Edmonson County Cattlemen's Association meeting last night in the Community Center in Brownsville.
Commissioner Quarles spoke on a range of issues that are affecting Kentucky farmers today, the first of which he said was that farmers are having to do their jobs on the defense, as a result of a lack of common sense in Washington, D.C..
"To be honest with you, it works against rural America and it works against agriculture," he said. "We're constantly having to defend our way of life."
He said the EPA is pulling products off the shelves that our farmers need, as well as preventing technology that the ag industry has spent decades developing. He also voiced his concern of the Green New Deal.
"This is the same one that wants to tax cow farts," he said.
He said one of the biggest issues farmers could face in the near future is the Biden administration's new defining of WOTUS, or "waters of the United States."
"This would give the EPA a power grab over in any puddle on your farm," Quarles said. "The Trump administration worked hard with American Farm Bureau, got the kinks worked out, and now they're (Biden admin) wanting to roll them back. We're keeping a vengeful, watchful eye on what's going on in Washington right now."
Quarles wanted to credit two groups of what he said were heroes who kept Kentucky going through the pandemic, which were healthcare workers and farmers. He thanked healthcare professionals for working around the clock to keep Kentuckians healthy and the farmers put in their hours to ensure Kentuckians still had food on the table.
He continued to speak on a range of other topics such as the definition of meat, which he said he worked on legislation with Rep. Michael Meredith, that would prohibit lab-grown products as being labeled as beef.
Commissioner Quarles spoke to the Edmonson Voice after addressing the crowd and offered some additional insight to what his office continues to work on for Kentucky and Edmonson County farmers.
"First, I want to say 'thank you' to Edmonson County farmers for preventing starvation, that's objective number one," he said. "Number two, we are concerned about the rising costs of inputs going into 2022, particularly when it comes to fertilizer and other common input supplies. That also affects infrastructure costs, if someone is renovating a barn, just getting reasonably-priced steel is going to be tough."
He discussed additional concern for what happens in Washington, as it relates to local farmers.
"We want to make sure that whatever policies are being talked about, that number one, Kentucky is at the table, but number two, that the finger is not pointed toward us when it comes to climate issues, that agriculture is playing a positive role, especially through conservation with helping to be better stewards of the environment."
He also wanted to discuss Kentucky Proud.
"Local agriculture is strong, we're trying to get more local food into our school systems, and the last thing is that we're trying to get a beef processing plant in Kentucky. I think that would transform the cattle industry in the Commonwealth in ways that simply need to be done."
The Edmonson County Cattlemen's Association says their goal is to be an advocate for beef farmers throughout the area as they promote the beef industry, advertise, lobby, and fight for legislation that helps working farmers.
After Quarles spoke to the crowd, local group secretary Scott Childress recognized all the veterans present and thanked them on behalf of the association for their service.
To find out more about the EC Cattlemen's Association, click here for their Facebook Page, or call 270-597-2462.
You can contact the office of Commissioner Quarles by clicking here.
Madison Doyle, story and photos:
Today, South Edmonson Elementary held their annual Veterans Day program, with Vietnam Veteran, Mr. Ray Durbin, as their guest speaker.
Mr. Durbin said it was "an honor and a privilege" to be there. "You all are the reason I am here today", as he told the students they were the reason he does what he does.
The program was student led. Please enjoy this slideshow of the students who participated:
A very emotional performance of "God Bless the USA" was given by two students, Blaine Thomas, and Kinsley Jessie, who is a totally visually impaired kindergarten student. They proudly sang as the student body accompanied them, leaving teachers, parents, and veterans in tears.
Mrs. Jessica Doyle, who put most of today's program together, said she was very proud of her students. "This is my favorite program we put on every year."
She said she often has students with tears in her eyes as they practice these patriotic songs. "When they sing these songs, you can feel that they really mean it. It makes it worth it all."
Mrs. Jessica also wanted to thank Ray Durbin.
"We never get tired of hearing stories from our favorite veteran and adopted bulldog, Ray Durbin."
She said she appreciates how much he loves the kids, and how the kids love him, and the time he volunteers at the school is "priceless".
Principal Sarah Hatton told her students she was "so proud" of them today. She wanted to thank teachers Mrs. Jessica Doyle, Mrs. Shannon Lowe, and Mrs. Taylor Renfro for all their hard work dedicated to organizing the program. She also thanked the veterans for coming, and for what they do for us.
Lunch Sponsored By Patton Funeral Home at the Heritage Centre
It is common for the Edmonson County Chamber of Commerce to host free luncheons and other similar events throughout the year but today's lunch event was for the purpose of extending gratitude to one group of special folks; local veterans and their families.
While the event was free to the public, as most all Chamber events, local vets and their families were honored first and served by Chamber members and other volunteers. Patton Funeral Home sponsored the event that was held at the Heritage Centre, across from the funeral home.
Andrea Brantley of Patton Funeral Home along with several others, including members of the DAV Auxiliary, spent their time at the event serving the veterans.
"It's our pleasure to do this," she said. "We are so happy to have this opportunity today for all our veterans."
Chamber Director Greg Hudson, who retired after 20 years of service as a Marine gunnery sergeant in mechanized infantry, said it was an honor for the Chamber of Commerce to host the event.
"We're very glad for the turnout, despite the rainy weather," he said. "We want to honor our veterans and their families and the very least we can do is say 'thank you' by serving them lunch."
To find out how you or your business can join the Edmonson County Chamber of Commerce, please visit EdmonsonChamber.com.
ECHS Host 2021 Veterans Program: Voice of Democracy Student Winners Deliver Speeches
Mrs. Donna Engel Featured As Keynote Speaker
Darren Doyle, story and photos:
Veterans were honored at Edmonson County High School today in the annual Veterans Day Program, hosted by ECHS administration, students, and local VFW Chapter #6937.
Special guest speaker was Mrs. Donna Engel, VFW Post/District Quartermaster and U.S. Air Force Veteran.
Mrs. Engel discussed portions of her 8 and 1/2 year career in the Air Force as a computer programmer, which part of it she described by saying, "I wouldn't say I'd have to kill ya if I told ya, but I'm not supposed to tell ya."
She said she didn't have grand stories of battle to tell, instead, she told about how the Air Force had afforded her opportunities in life. She encouraged those in attendance to seek out opportunities, to work to make opportunities, and to take advantage of those opportunities in the best ways they could.
The program was emceed by Assistant Principal Nikki Culbreth and the colors were presented by Edmonson County Boy Scout Troop 597. ECHS FFA President Danyale Atwell led the crowd in the Pledge of Allegiance and the Star Spangled Banner was sung by Sheriff Shane Doyle.
Edmonson County Judge Executive Wil Cannon presented Edwin Vincent, VFW State Commander and CMSGT, U.S. Air Force Retired, with a county proclamation for "Edwin Vincent Day," for November 12, 2021 in honor of the work that Vincent has not only done in military service, but also on behalf of veterans with his participation and leadership of state, regional, and local VFW chapters.
In Vincent's address to the crowd, he recognized Mr. Paul Vincent, age 94, who is the last known Edmonson County WW2 Veteran. Mr. Paul Vincent was greeted with a standing ovation. Many also know Paul as one who loves to visit local churches where he often sings the old song "I'll Wear a White Robe."
Voice of Democracy Winners with Asst. Principal Nikki Culbreth: third place winner Alyssa Doyle, second place winner Emma Sackett, and first place winner Lyla Wood.
The Voice of Democracy speech winners also delivered their addresses to the crowd, which was first place winner ($500 prize) Lyla Wood, second place winner ($300) Emma Sackett, and third place winner ($200) Alyssa Doyle.
The awards were presented by Gerald Carroll, VFW Senior Vice Commander, U.S. Army Aviation, Chief Warrant Officer 5 (R). Prize money was donated by Bank of Edmonson County, who also provided a hospitality room for veterans and their families, Gravil Funeral Home, Kyle White-Edmonson County PVA, County Attorney Greg Vincent, and County Clerk Kevin Alexander.
The ECHS band played several numbers and band member Emilee Denham closed today's program with the playing of "Taps."
All veterans in the crowd were recognized by their branches of service; Army, Navy, Marines, Coast Guard, and Air Force. Although no one was present to represent the Space Force, the branch was recognized.
ECHS Principal Jonathan Williams said he was thankful that the program was back at school this year, after 2020's program was cancelled in the midst of the pandemic.
"I was very proud of our students and their behavior today," he said. "It’s so crucial for our youngsters to see our veterans and celebrate what they gave for us, so that we can have our freedoms today. I’m glad to live in a community that loves our veterans, the flag, and those that protect and serve it."
Darren Doyle, story:
Multiple candidates have filed to run for office in the 2022 Edmonson County Primary Election, which will be held in May.
As of Wednesday, November 10, 2021, only two incumbents have filed for re-election, which include Sheriff Shane Doyle and County Attorney Greg Vincent.
The 2022 election will be for all county offices, which include Judge Executive, Sheriff, County Attorney, PVA, Circuit Court Clerk, County Clerk, Jailer, Magistrates from all six districts, and District Constables.
Those wishing to seek office have until January 7th to file with the County Clerk's Office; however, one must also first file with the state election finance committee. For more information about running for local office, contact the County Clerk's Office at 270-597-2624.
So far, the following candidates have filed for office:
Jordan Jones (R)
Ronald Scott Lindsey (R)
Shane A. Doyle (R) (incumbent)
Stoney Phillips (R)
James Vincent (R)
Todd Vincent (R)
Gregory Royce Vincent (R) (incumbent)
Magistrate, District Four:
James “Mickey” Johnson (R)
Pat Prunty (R)
Juveniles Were Reportedly Not Injured
Darren Doyle, story:
A local woman was arrested when suspected drugs and paraphernalia were found in her vehicle next to juveniles after a recent DUI accident, according to the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office.
A statement from the Sheriff's Office said that around 7PM on Saturday, November 6, 2021, officers were dispatched to the 4000 block of Veteran’s Memorial Highway for a two vehicle non-injury accident. According to the Sheriff's Office, upon making contact with the driver who allegedly initiated the collision, identified as Lindsey J. Joy (43) of Smiths Grove, deputies observed that she was showing signs of intoxication.
After field tests were administered, the Sheriff's Office stated that Joy was impaired and asked for consent to search her person and vehicle, which was reportedly granted by Joy. Officers located several syringes with suspected methamphetamine; one of which was in the backseat of the vehicle where two juvenile passengers were seated, according to the Sheriff's Office.
Joy was placed under arrest and charged with:
The juvenile passengers were reportedly released to the custody of a family member. Joy was lodged in the Hart County Jail. The Sheriff's Office stated that this is an active investigation with further charges pending. The Sheriff's Office was assisted on scene by Brownsville City Police and Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife.
Darren Doyle, story:
Two men were arrested on meth and other charges in separate non-related incidents this past Friday and Saturday, one of which included a high-speed pursuit, according to the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office.
The Sheriff's Office stated that around 9:00 pm on Friday, November 5, 2021, a deputy observed a red Ford Ranger traveling southbound on KY HWY 259 with an off-road LED light bar on. The deputy reportedly initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle at the Edmonson County Water District and identified the operator as Jeremy Patrick Wright (44) of Caneyville.
The Sheriff's Office stated that they discovered Wright’s license was suspended and he had an active warrant from Butler County for failure to appear on traffic violation charges. In the process of placing Wright under arrest for the active warrant, deputies said they observed items commonly used for the manufacturing of methamphetamine laying in plain view of the truck bed. A further search of the vehicle produced additional items of the same nature, the Sheriff's Office stated.
In addition to the warrant being served, Wright was charged with:
Wright was lodged in Hart County Jail.
Just a few hours later around midnight on November 6th, Edmonson County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a suspicious person complaint at the 4000 block of Brownsville Road. According to the Sheriff's Office, the caller provided the license plate information of the vehicle and stated he believed the driver of the vehicle to be Jordan Travis Watt (25) of Bowling Green, Kentucky. As deputies were en route, they were notified that the vehicle had left and was traveling towards 31W, the Sheriff's Office stated.
Authorities said that officers found a vehicle matching the description sitting nearly sideways in the northbound lane of 31W. According to the Sheriff's Office, deputies recognized the driver to be Watt and activated their blue lights to initiate a traffic stop; however, Watt reportedly spun tires and fled northbound towards Brownsville, nearly striking the front end of a patrol vehicle. A pursuit of the vehicle was initiated by law enforcement for roughly three miles at speeds of over 100 miles; however, officers were unable to keep close enough pace with the vehicle to continue the pursuit, the Sheriff's Office said.
Approximately 30 minutes later, an Edmonson County Sheriff’s Deputy reportedly observed Watt driving back in the same area where the pursuit began. The Sheriff's Office said that another traffic stop was attempted but Watt was able to elude law enforcement again.
A short time later, Watt was found to be back at the residence on Brownsville Road in the same vehicle involved in the pursuit. According to the Sheriff's Office, deputies made contact with Watt in the yard of the residence and discovered suspected marijuana on his person and inside the vehicle. Watt allegedly showed signs of impairment but refused a blood test at the time of his arrest. The Edmonson County Sheriff’s Office arrested Watt and charged him with:
Watt was lodged in Hart County Jail. Edmonson County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by Brownsville City Police. The Sheriff's Office also stated that District 5 Constable Charlie Peck sustained considerable damage to his vehicle after hitting a deer while in route to assist with the pursuit.
Darren Doyle, story and photo:
A Cub Run man has died as a result from injuries sustained in a house fire earlier this morning, according to the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office.
Firefighters were paged this morning around 7AM to the 300 block of Logsdon Road in Cub Run to a report of a structure fire.
According to the Sheriff's Office, family members saw smoke coming from the residence but as they attempted to make entry, the house became fully engulfed and they were unable to get to resident inside, who was identified as Wilburn Cox, 86.
Mr. Cox was pronounced deceased by the Hart County Coroner's office. The Edmonson County Coroner's office was currently closed due to required training.
"We appreciate the efforts of our local fire departments, especially Lincoln," he said. "This fire took place in their district and all our emergency personnel did everything they could. These are always very tragic and difficult situations and our hearts go out to this family. We are very sorry for their loss."
Responding to the scene were the Lincoln, Kyrock, and Brownsville Fire Departments, Edmonson County Emergency Management, Edmonson EMS, the Edmonson County Sheriff's Office, and the Hart County Coroner.
Court Moves Forward For County's Participation In Opioid Settlement Agreement
Darren Doyle, story and photo:
Edmonson County Fiscal Court voted to accept a proclamation naming November 12, 2021 "Edwin D. Vincent Day" in the county at today's meeting.
Vincent, a local resident and veteran of the U.S. Air Force, was recently named State Commander of the VFW.
Vincent enlisted in the United States Air Force in June, 1965 and after 18 years he attained the rank of Chief Master Sargent, a rank restricted to the top one percent of the United States Air Force Enlisted Corp. During his 30 year enlistment, he served in 8 states and 5 foreign countries before retiring in 1995.
In 2006, he joined the Veterans of Foreign Wars where he developed the Flag Etiquette Training Program to be presented to all 4th grade students in Edmonson County, now in its 7th year. With the assistance of the Post Auxiliary, he revitalized the V.F.W. Post 6937 Burial Honors Program with new uniforms, weapons, and service flags for each branch of service.
After joining the V.F.W. he has served as the Post Commander, District Commander, State Surgeon, State Judge Advocate, State Junior Vice Commander, State Senior Vice Commander and now the Department of Kentucky State Commander.
The proclamation was signed by Edmonson County Judge Executive Wil Cannon and passed unanimously by magistrates.
State Representative Michael Meredith was presented the 2021 County Advocate Award by KACo during the virtual meeting, as we reported earlier.
Sheriff Shane Doyle reported that his office had made several arrests on felony indictment warrants since the last fiscal court meeting along with three felony drug arrests last week.
Jailer Report: Judge Cannon reported 29 county inmates were currently housed at Hart County Jail.
A.B. Webb, Director of Parks and Rec reported on last week's Halloween At The Park, which brought out the biggest crowd ever. He said the horseshoe shelter at Chalybeate Park saved the event because of the rainy weather. He also said the soccer program concluded for this year, also with another record group of participants. Youth basketball is about to be underway and that program is also seeing record numbers with 155 players signed up. He added that the ECHS Tennis Team is now using the courts at Chalybeate. He concluded his report by saying park personnel is working now to winterize all local parks.
Tourism: County Tourism Director Vanessa Ulm said she was excited to see the Tourism Office's social media accounts growing, which is crucial for gaining attention here in the county. She encouraged everyone at the meeting to follow their Facebook and Instagram accounts. She also said that painting has been approved for the Hall of Honor in the county courthouse. She also discussed a Blue Water Trail signage opportunity, which will show launch points for boating and kayaking. The area has two Blue Water Trails: Dennison Ferry to Green River Ferry, and Green River Ferry to three other access points in Brownsville. “This is a huge opportunity for tourism,” Ulm said.
The court also voted to approve an email sent to FEMA which expresses frustration with county personnel requirements to inspect local damages. According to County Treasurer Tammi Willhite, the county does not have the manpower to provide the inspections that FEMA has required at the schedule of FEMA, and requested FEMA to provide assistance with these inspections.
County Attorney Greg Vincent updated the court on the county's participation of KY's $460 million Opioid Settlement Agreement. Vincent has been working on resolution EC-125, which states that Edmonson County will agree to the ways that whatever money received from the settlement can be spent. Vincent said he did not have any actual figures yet. The resolution was passed by the court.
The next fiscal court meeting is scheduled for Monday, November 22nd at 9AM and will be held virtually.
First-Ever County Advocate Award Presented by Kentucky Association of Counties
Shelly Hampton, Director of Government Affairs for KACo, presents Rep. Michael Meredith a County Advocate Award as Edmonson County Judge Executive Wil Cannon and Assistant Director Gracie Lagadenos stand by.
State Representative Michael Lee Meredith was presented the 2021 County Advocate Award by Shelly Hampton, Director of Government Affairs for KACo, The Kentucky Association of Counties.
Hampton discussed why Representative Meredith was deserving of the award.
"This is probably one of the easiest awards for us to give, for his leadership as Chairman of the Local Government Committee in the House, he also spear-headed a jail task force last interim, and he's constantly representing his district as well as taking local government as a whole, and county government into consideration during the session," she said. "He is very approachable and his door has always been open to KACo and to county government."
Hampton also noted Meredith's work on the Veterans Nursing Home Project, his knowledge of county government, and his work with emergency services.
"We are very fortunate to have him in our corner in the legislature and you all should be very proud of the work that Chairman Meredith does on your all's behalf. So we want to present Representative Meredith with our first-ever, the first year we've done this, with a county advocate award for all the work he does on behalf of county government."
Meredith thanked Hampton and KACo and said it was an honor to work with her and her staff. He also acknowledged the fiscal court and said he has always enjoyed his work with them, too.
"You all are great leaders for the county but most importantly, you are my friends and have been for many years," he said. "Getting this first-time award here at home means a whole lot and I try to stay out of your business until you need me to be in your business, and I'm always just a phone call away."
MAMMOTH CAVE, Ky. – A rehabilitation project to improve portions of the Mammoth Cave Railroad Bike and Hike Trail, including the Doyel Valley Boardwalk, will begin on Monday, November 8. The portion of the trail between Carmichael Road and Sloans Crossing Pond along with the Doyel Valley Overlook and parking area will be temporarily closed. The project is estimated to last 8 weeks.
Improvement work to West Entrance Road (KY-70) will resume on Monday, November 8. Paving work is expected to last until Tuesday, November 30 and will take place between the Turnhole Bend Nature Trail parking area and the park entrance near Brownsville. The Turnhole Bend Nature Trail parking area will remain open. The road paving project involves roadway resurfacing, the hardening of road shoulders, and expansion or replacement of existing guard rails, and is being coordinated by the United States Federal Highway Administration and National Park Service.
Work associated with these projects may result in minor traffic delays lasting no more than 15 minutes. Motorists are advised to exercise caution while traveling through these areas of Mammoth Cave National Park.
Edmonson Voice Report:
The boil water advisory that was issued for Brownsville city residents south of the Green River earlier this week has been lifted, as reported by City Hall in Brownsville.
Two major water leaks caused outages Monday evening and continued until Wednesday, when the leaks were repaired.
Water flow was reported back to normal on Wednesday evening.
EDMONSON COUNTY FISCAL COURT
NOTICE OF REGULAR AUDIO/VIDEO TELECONFERENCE MEETING
In accordance with KRS 61.823, KRS 61.826, Executive Order 2020-243, OAG 20-05, 2020 Senate Bill 150 and the March 31 Attorney General Advisory, the Edmonson County Fiscal Court will meet in session at 9:00 a.m. on November 8, 2021 to consider the following Agenda. The meeting will take place via audio teleconference due to the current public health situation with the fiscal court not meeting in person. The public may attend via audio by dialing: 1-312-626-6799, meeting ID 816 6777 3219, password 954987 or by going to the following link:
EDMONSON COUNTY JUDGE EXECUTIVE
Boil Water Advisory Still In Effect
Darren Doyle, story and photos:
Two different water leaks were finally located and repaired over the last day-and-a-half in the City of Brownsville; leaks that disrupted service and closed schools on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Brownsville residents began to notice no or very little pressure on Monday night around 7:30PM. It was soon discovered there was a major line break somewhere as the city's 200,000 gallon reservoir tank was emptied in just a couple of hours. However, city officials were stumped because there was no sign of water flowing in the roadways, in yards, or pooling anywhere else, which is the first obvious sign of a leak, especially one that large.
Workers attempted tracking down water lines throughout the late hours of Monday into the predawn hours of Tuesday; still, no luck and very few city water customers were left without some sort of disruption of their water service.
Local schools were cancelled due to the Edmonson County 5/6 Center being completely out of water and ECHS and ECMS did not have enough water to operate.
Mayor Jerry Meredith said the first major break was discovered last night around 7PM on Mohawk Street.
"There was a tree root that had pushed the line up and broke it," he said. "The water was able to run into a drainage tile under the road, which carried it out to the woods. That's why no one could see it."
Mohawk Street runs into Carder Street just past Oak Hill Road. The elevation drops drastically in that area.
Meredith said the break was repaired by midnight; however, the reservoir tank was still not filling at the normal rate, which meant there was a problem elsewhere. Through more line tracing, the other leak was discovered on B Street, which is off of Vincent Street, behind the EC 5/6 Center and baseball field. Water was coming out of the pavement in the street.
Today, workers spent the day repairing the line and by around 2PM, water was flowing properly back into the city and filling the reservoir at regular pace.
"The city will remain under a boil water advisory for probably a day or two," the mayor said.
The advisory will affect the city residents south of the Green River, only. Those on county water are not affected, nor are any city residents on the north side of the river.
Edmonson County Schools announced this afternoon that school will be back in session on Thursday, November 4th.
City Water Outage: Leak Still Hasn't Been Found, School Cancelled For Wednesday, November 3rd
Darren Doyle, story and photos:
Brownsville residents are still in the midst of a water outage after city personnel and utility crews have searched nonstop all day today and much of last night for a leak in a main line that has drained the city's 200,000 gallon reservoir.
Brownsville mayor Jerry Meredith said in his 30 years of dealing with city business and local utilities, he's never seen anything quite like this.
"When you have that much water leaking out, it's normally not too hard to find it because you've got a mess somewhere," he said. "In this case, we think it may have found a sinkhole or pathway to a cave or something like that because we can't find it anywhere."
Meredith said the city began receiving calls of no water or no water pressure from the mobile home park near the southside city limits last night around 7PM. Main water lines feeding that area appear to working properly, which he said was puzzling.
He said by 9PM, the city's reservoir tank was empty.
City water is fed from a designated line from the Edmonson County Water District. The city has their own water service the same as they have their own sewer and trash services. Meredith said the Edmonson Water District line is feeding properly and from there, everywhere they've checked, there has been no leak discovered anywhere.
"We've got our city workers, guys from the Edmonson Water District, the Kentucky Rural Water Division, and engineers on this," he said. "I know this is a huge inconvenience for city residents, but we're doing everything we can do and we ask for you patience."
Meredith said on top of the need for homes and businesses to have water services restored as soon as possible, the nursing home and schools are also without. Edmonson County schools were cancelled today because there was no water at all at the EC 5/6 Center and neither ECHS nor ECMS had enough pressure to operate properly.
Superintendent of Edmonson County Schools Brian Alexander told the Edmonson Voice this evening that school is going to be cancelled again for Wednesday, November 3rd due to the continuing issue.
"The health and safety of our students and staff comes first and we can't provide a healthy environment without proper facilities, which obviously takes water," he said. "Wednesday will not be an NTI day; however, if we have to cancel past Wednesday, we will incorporate virtual learning for all students. We'll just have to see what happens."
The mayor also said there is no logical pattern with some of the places that have water and those that don't, and that's what's got utility workers and city officials at a loss.
"It just doesn't make sense, but we just have to keep tracing down lines until we find it. It's just been a mind-wracking thing."
Mayor Meredith said the city will be under a boil water advisory until further notice.
Brownsville City Officials Still Searching For Source
Darren Doyle, story:
Edmonson County Schools will be closed today due to some sort of water leak in Brownsville that has not yet been found.
Superintendent of Schools Brian Alexander said that there is no water at the EC 5/6 Center and a very diminished supply at ECHS and ECMS.
"We'll have to close schools today because of this," he said. "This will not be an NTI day so we will make this up later in the year."
Brownsville Mayor Jerry Meredith said crews have been searching for the leak throughout a good portion of last night through the early morning hours but have had no success in finding the source.
"We've looked everywhere," he said. "We discovered an issue last night around 7PM. Our supply tank for the city is empty. It's basically the process of walking and looking for water so the rain last night didn't help. We're advising everyone in the Brownsville city limits south of the river to boil your water if you have any now and after water service is restored. We have reinforcements coming in to help and we're doing all we can at this time."
Sheriff Shane Doyle said that the Edmonson County Courthouse and the Sheriff's Office will be closed today as a result; however, law enforcement officers are still on duty.
The Edmonson County Attorney’s Office will also be closed today.