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Commission greenlights RFP for West Covington Fire Station; Fiscal Court meetings may be on tap

By Ryan Clark
NKyTribune reporter

The West Covington Fire Station is one step closer to becoming reality.

Commissioners approved an order to authorize a Request for Proposals for a Covington Fire Station Site and Facilities Study at their regularly scheduled legislative meeting Tuesday night at City Hall.

And while the vote for the RFP was unanimous, it wasn’t without discussion.

Commissioners were a bit concerned about recent rumors that implied the new fire station would be combining with another existing one.

Fire Chief Mark Pierce shot down those rumors.

“At each point of this process, we’re going to be able to offer input,” Commissioner Tim Downing confirmed.

Commissioner Denny Bowman asked if the report would include prospective sites for the station. He said he was worried about possible skyrocketing property values based on where the station might be located — a problem some have heard occurring with the recent RIPPLE Effect projects where the city is investing in helping improve various properties.

Pierce said the report will show a geographic location, but reiterated that every task will be completed, then presented, to the Commission.

The city received a grant through the State Department of Local Government for $300,000, which will be used for the West Covington Fire Station property acquisition including, but not limited to:
*Purchase of the property for the construction of a new fire station
*Astudy to determine potential sites
*GIS mapping of the district to be served
*Any additional site work necessary prior to purchase of the property,
*Surveying, legal research and preparatory documentation
*Consulting from an architect

Responses must be submitted by: 10 a.m., April 29, 2019.

Bowman suggests Fiscal Court meetings

Commissioner Denny Bowman suggested Tuesday that the Commission may want to meet semi-regularly with the county Fiscal Court.

Whether it be the county’s purchase of a new administrative building, the city’s sanitation issues, as well as discussions over animal control, shelter in place, the IRS building and police dispatch, Bowman says, “There’s just so many things we could talk (about). This could be a big plus for us.”

Mayor Joseph U. Meyer said he would follow up with the county Judge Executive, Kris Knochelmann.

Tri State Valet to continue services for MainStrasse

Commissioners voted 4-1 to continue services with Tri State Valet, Inc. — which has provided valet services in the MainStrasse area since 2016 — in order to accommodate visitor parking in MainStrasse while the Riverhaus garage is under construction, utilizing four public street parking spaces for valet operations.

Commissioner Michelle Williams was the only dissenter.

License fee to remain at 12 percent

Commissioners heard the second reading of an ordinance to amend a section of the city’s code of ordinances to keep the municipal insurance premium license fee at 12 percent of premiums collected.

Sen. McDaniel provides update …

Sen. Chris McDaniel presented to the Commission Tuesday night, fresh off Gov. Matt Bevin’s veto of a pension bill which would provide relief to some state-funded agencies. The Governor also said he would call a Special Session of the legislature before July 1.

“That’s taken up a lot of my evening,” McDaniel said.

McDaniel reported that one of the things he learned during the session was that nonprofit organizations can be very unaware of state laws. For instance, he explained how there is no sales tax on items at fundraisers — which are characterized as “one-time” events.

The next regularly scheduled Covington Commission meeting will be a caucus meeting held at 6 p.m., April 16, at the Covington City Hall at 20 West Pike St.

Contact the Northern Kentucky tribune at news@nkytrib.com

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