While the Corinth City Council dealt with its usual sort of business, the bulk of the lengthy meeting was spent repeating the pros and cons of the proposed non-smoking ordinance. Ultimately, it was decided to seek formal input from the citizens of Corinth via a public hearing.

Because the city was in arrears and will need to pay for the 2023 winter, a $9000 payment to the county was approved. Most of these monies will come from receipt of the Municipal Road Aid Funding the council previously approved.

According to Mayor Dalaney Bishop, Magistrate Jacqualynn Riley had notified him the city was four years in arrears. Upon reviewing city records, they found it was only two years. Council moved to pay the full amount.

A chain saw was purchased for $276.97 to use in cleaning and maintaining city property. Employees have started spring clean-up, beginning with the road out of town toward Scott County.

The non-smoking ordinance took up most of the meeting as those on both sides of the issue re-iterated their positions and directed questions to the council. The ordinance would ban smoking within 25 feet of a public entrance of a public building or business. It would not prohibit smoking on sidewalks nor in private businesses nor residences.

Should the city move to enact the ordinance, the Northern Kentucky Health Department would provide enforcement, ranging from verbal warnings to written citations.

Sam Patel, owner of Noble’s Truckstop, again expressed his opposition to the ban, saying it would infringe on the “freedom” of his customers who want to smoke while they are eating. He said it would also pose a monetary hardship on his business.

Patel said the population of Corinth is not enough to support his business, which depends on transient traffic who, he says, prefer to be able to smoke inside while eating.

FLAGG Representatives Tim Sizemore and Marsha Bach also returned to express their support of the ordinance, which is intended to protect the health of citizens. They cited research showing businesses improve and hospital visits due to smoking issues decrease in the wake of a smoking ban.

Area residents Heather and Taylor Henry attended the meeting and spoke up, saying that they and their children will not eat at a restaurant allowing smoking.

Bishop called for a voice vote, with council members Darren Billiter and Paul Ollbering voting “no” and council members Kathy McNabb and Jessica Beach voting “yes.” Instead of casting the deciding vote, Bishop elected to hold a public hearing to get input from the citizens of Corinth.

Patel had offered to purchase some of the city property that is adjacent to his. However, upon researching the matter, Bishop discovered that if a “city sells property, it has to be surplussed…you cannot just walk in and purchase” it.

According to City Clerk Tara Wright, the Kentucky League of Cities (founded 1927 KLC is a voluntary league of cities whose mission is to serve “as the united voice of cities by supporting community innovation, effective leadership and quality governance) dictates that property must be “…surplussed; then either put up for bid, sealed bid, or an option” to buy. Council decided now was not the time to sell the property.

The next meeting of the Corinth City Council will be on Monday, June 12 at 7:00 p.m. at the City Building, 217 Thomas Lane. For questions, call 859 824 5922.

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