M A T T E R S
Warm weather is just around the corner, and the Jessamine County Health Department (JCHD), Jessamine County Extension Office, YMCA and Parks & Recreation want you to get off the couch, get moving, and most of all, get fit. For adults, JCHD and the County Extension Office are launching Step into Spring, an annual “do it yourself” walking program. “It’s a great way to be more active and get fit,” said Health Educator Andrea Brown. “This year, we’re also offering Small Steps to Wellness, a six week health and financial wellness program. Participants will get financial and physical health tips from guest speakers such as local bankers and healthcare workers in the program’s weekly (one hour) classes,” Brown said. Jessamine County YMCA, County Extension Office and Parks & Recreation will join JCHD to ensure that the county’s young people (1219 years old) will have just as much – if not more – motivation to get moving as the adults. In May, the organizations will launch VERB, a community-based program that fights childhood obesity by offering kids a way to become eligible for prizes by
JUDGE/EXECUTIVE Wm. Neal Cassity MAGISTRATES DISTRICT 1 Bobby Day Wilson DISTRICT 2 Tim Vaughan DISTRICT 3 Terry Meckstroth DISTRICT 4 George Dean DISTRICT 5 John Nickell DISTRICT 6 Duane McCuddy
tracking their physical activity over the summer. Local vendors and organizations will offer discounts for participants; they can either log their activities online or use a VERB scorecard that they’ll turn in at the end of the program in August. Prizes will include Nintendo Wii, bikes, and other donated items. Discounts, giveaways and prizes – oh my! Sounds like it’s going to be more fun than ever to live, work, and play in Jessamine County!
Jessamine Matters is produced for Jessamine County Fiscal Court by Mollie McClure, Red Hat Creative firstname.lastname@example.org Design by Jim Gaddis, LightSculptor Photography & Design Jim@LightSculptor.com
It’s a great day to live, work and play in Jessamine County!
Left: The facade of the newly opened W. N. Cassity Building in downtown Nicholasville. Center: The back trail at Camp Nelson is a scenic location and a great place to go hiking. Right: The first floor conference room in the W. N. Cassity building may be reserved for public use.
CREATING A LEGACY
Want a peek at the future of Jessamine County? Visit the newly dedicated W. N. Cassity Building on Main Street, Nicholasville, home of offices for Jessamine County Attorney (CA) Brian Goettl as well as several other county and state employees. You’ll find a building designed to meet the county’s needs for a century or more. Goettl and County Judge/Executive Wm. Neal Cassity, along with countless others, have invested plenty of time and effort to create a building that will serve the county “for at least the next 100 years.” “Neal Cassity is definitely to be admired for the vision and dedication he has shown in his work to bring this project to life,” Goettl said. “Ideas are one thing, making it happen is another thing. Judge Cassity had the courage and ability to make this happen.” state for expenses – including rent. By owning the building that houses the CA offices, the county could receive that reimbursement – helping the building virtually pay for itself. The CA offices take up approximately 4,600 square feet (one-third of the building’s square footage) – offices of the judicial branch of state government, including pretrial services, a juvenile intake worker, and family court are also leasing space in the building. “We’ll eventually have a misdemeanor drug court in the building, too,” Judge Cassity said. “It will be the first one in county history.” In addition to offering space for new offices and services, the W. N. Cassity Building provides much needed room for existing CA services. “In our old space, we were so cramped that we had workers in the same room together, and one sitting in a hallway. You need privacy to deal with matters such as child support, and we didn’t have it,” Goettl said. With the new space comes increased efficiency, according to Goettl. Before the move, Goettl often had to leave his office (formerly the old Walker Hotel building approximately one block from the Courthouse), go to a small office on Court Row – and wait for preliminary hearings to begin. “Before, I had no desk space. Now, I can take phone calls and handle whatever developments that might come up in the main office.” The move also increases efficiency among court workers in general because “it brings so many court The facade of the W. N. Cassity workers together in one place, in an Building on Main St. in historic extremely use-able downtown Nicholasville. space,” Goettl added.
Jessamine County Attorney Brian Goettl at his desk in the W. N. Cassity Building.
Goettl was in the midst of plans to locate a new home for the CA’s office in the currently vacant lot on the corner of Oak and First Streets when Judge Cassity called him and suggested the possibility of renovating the burned out Main Street buildings and moving Goettl’s and several other offices there. The request gave Goettl the opportunity to bring his own plan to fruition – one designed to provide the county with a “major” opportunity to cut costs and increase services at the same time. As the provider of the child support services for the county, the CA office receives reimbursement from the
With over a to do list that includes over 4,000 active child support cases, approximately 300 misdemeanors and traffic offenses and 80-100 juvenile court cases per week, efficiency is a high priority for the CA office.
Squaring Things Up
According to John Dalton, construction manager and project supervisor for the Wm. Neal Cassity building, one of the most difficult aspects of the job was in “constructing a new building that is square and level – and tying it into two buildings that weren’t square and level.” Each of the surrounding buildings had different floor elevations, Dalton said, meaning that he “had to do a lot of shimmying and head scratching” in order to tie everything together. “It was a lot like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole,” he explained.
The head scratching was worth it, though, according to Dalton, who said that he is “really 1890 was discovered on an original plaster wall. happy” with the way the building turned out. It was hidden beneath four layers of wall paper. Like Goettl, Dalton was also proud of the “smart” The county is growing and changing, and the W. N. use of tax dollars that the building represents. Cassity building gives the CA office the ability to grow “The judge chose to run the job in the most ecoand change right along with it. nomical way possible,” he explained. Jessamine County workers – including road, “In addition to Judge Cassity’s vision of a building that could serve the community well into the next century, maintenance and even some Community this is a culmination of the Service workers – did much vision I had to transform from “It’s just a tremendous, beautiful of the construction and site a CA office with a small town work, creating approximatefacility, and one that will serve focus to a CA office with a ly $265,000 in total savings. larger community focus, the county’s residents for a very because that’s what we are – long time.” a large community with a “Using our own workers Jessamine County Attorney Brian Goettl large community’s needs,” helped us save quite a bit,” Goettl said. Judge Cassity said. “John (Dalton) was also a huge asset. I’ve worked around construction for most of my life, and I don’t know if I’ve ever known anyone as good as he is. He did an excellent job.”
During the renovation process this signature dated
Judge Cassity and Les Watts (Property Maintenance Supervisor) in front of the completed building.
“We also chose materials and furnishings that are nice, and that will last and look nice for a very long time, but that weren’t expensive. Instead of spending $10,000 on office furniture, we spent less than half of that,” Goettl said. “It’s just a tremendous, beautiful facility, and one that will serve the county’s residents for a very long time,” he added.
Ask a Jessamine County resident about walking and hiking trails in the area, and it’s likely that you’ll be directed to Lake Mingo in Nicholasville. The gently sloping walking/running track that winds around Lake Mingo’s lake and the parks wooded fields is nearly a mile long, and it is a popular spot for residents of all ages. The county’s other trails might not be as heavily used, but they offer just as much opportunity for a fun outdoor experience this spring. In fact, the county owns and maintains over 200 acres of beautiful parks, and many of those acres are home to some sort of walking track or hiking trail.
In addition to a very scenic, moderately difficult 1.3 mile trail, Hickman Creek Nature Center offers a renovated and expanded log cabin with a full modern kitchen and bathroom facilities. For a small fee, the building and surrounding grounds can be reserved for social, educational and recreational functions by calling 881-5716 or 492-3115.
At Camp Nelson, walking and hiking enthusiasts can explore over five miles of trails that are open nearly every day from dawn to dusk. “We have plenty of walkers who come here to walk because it’s a part of their weight loss or general healthy living regimen,” Director of Special Projects Mary Kozak said. “Visitors can also use the interpretive
High Bridge Park offers a beautiful overlook of High Bridge in addition to a well maintained park that has a lot to offer for both adults and kids.
“We’re really proud of the beautiful trails we have here in the county,” said County Judge/Executive Wm. Neal Cassity. “Trails like those at Camp Nelson Heritage Park and Hickman Creek Nature Center offer outdoor experiences in some of the most beautiful outdoor settings in the state. I’d encourage everyone to explore our trails.”
A railroad trail path similar to the one pictured above is part of the master plan for the RINEY B Park located just off the Nicholasville By-Pass.
trails to learn more about Camp Nelson’s history and the significant role it played in the Civil War. Whether they’re here for exercise or to expand their knowledge of local history, walkers and hikers have the opportunity to enjoy the absolutely gorgeous landscape that surrounds the camp,” she added. Although RINEY B Park (located just off the Nicholasville By-Pass near the Aquatic Center) is still under development, the park offers an oasis of natural, open spaces in its urban setting. “The public is welcome to come and enjoy the park and explore the remnants of the old Riney B rail line,” Nicolasville/Jessamine County Parks & Recreation Board Member and Jessamine County Magistrate George Dean said. “The county has applied for a $62,500 recreational trails grant to offset the costs of constructing an asphalt path along the old RINEY B rail line,” Dean added.
Around the corner...
For those Jessamine County residents looking for new paths to wander, fulfillment is just around the corner. As part of its participation in Partnership for a Fit Kentucky, Jessamine County representatives are working with the HealthWay Task Force to develop a trail system that will one day connect the Kentucky Horse Park to the new Palisades State Park in Garrard County.
Trail, trail – everywhere a trail!
History isn’t the only thing you’ll discover at Camp Nelson Heritage Park – there are also five walking trails ranging in length from .5 to 1.2 miles in length. Historic sites as well as interpretive signs dot the landscape along each of the trails – all within the Camp’s protected archeological and geographic recovery areas.
Check out the list of Camp Nelson trails below: Fort Trail -- .5 mile Depot Trail -- .5 mile Fort Putnam Loop -- .3 mile Long Fort Trail – 1.3 mile Fort Jones Overlook Trail – 1.2 mile For more information about Camp Nelson Heritage Parks’ trails, including a printable trail map, visit: www.campnelson.org
TALKING TURKEY WITH JUDGE CASSITY
We dropped by County Judge/Executive Wm. Neal Cassity’s office to chat about what kind of change and growth county residents can expect to see in 2008, and we weren’t disappointed. Here are just a few of the interesting insights Judge Cassity shared with us: What is the most noticeable change county residents will see in 2008? “The biggest change we’ll see is the improvement on US 68. After almost 12 years of discussion and planning, it’s finally becoming a reality. Once it’s complete, I think people will be really amazed at how safe and beautiful it will be. Like Paris Pike, it was designed with the goal of creating a safe roadway, while preserving as much of the existing beauty as possible.” down, we’re looking at a future that includes building a new hospital and YMCA, and several other businesses have indicated that they’re going to locate in Jessamine County. That means that the growth we lose in housing will be gained in business and jobs.” Are any major changes in county services planned? “Because we’re continually working to update, modernize and improve county services, our residents can always expect change – positive change. For example, we’re currently looking at ways to modernize our E-911 operation. We’ve also just recently moved the County Attorney’s offices into the renovated Main Street buildings in historic downtown Nicholasville – and that not only improves our ability to serve the public, it will give us the ability to operate more efficiently and economically. Other projects in the works include a bike and pedestrian path on US 68 that will start at the Horse Park and go all the way to the other side of the Kentucky River. That’s going to be a real plus for those who want to walk and ride bikes in the county. We’re not only improving the service we currently offer; we’re also making sure we’re prepared to provide efficient service far into the future.” What’s at the top of your wish list for the county in the next year or so? “I’d have to say getting the I-75 connector in the six year plan for the county. With a better transportation system, and the ability to get materials in and out of factories in the county, we’ll not only experience a growth in manufacturing – we’ll also experience a growth in the number of jobs and opportunities for our residents.”
Work to widen Highway US 68 is in progress.
We’ve seen quite a bit of growth in the business community over the past few years. Do you expect that growth to continue? “I expect us to continue to grow at a good rate. Even though the housing industry seems to be somewhat
CLEANING UP – COUNTY STYLE
Anniversaries are a “big” deal, especially at the Jessamine County Convenience Center, where Solid Waste Coordinator Johnetta Ogden is preparing for the county’s twentieth County-Wide Clean-Up (April 512). By “big,” we mean “huge” – in terms of tons of trash disposed of through the event. For example: in just five years, participants in the program have filled over 1,000 dumpsters with over 7,000 tons of trash. According to Ogden, residents have used the Annual County-Wide Clean-Up event to dispose of everything from the unexpected, like cars and boats, to the mundane, such as old furniture and appliances. “A few years ago, one resident made a little trailer out of the back of a pickup truck – the truck bed was filled with trash,” she said. “When we started to help them unload, they stopped us, saying they wanted to dump the trailer, too.”
COUNTY-WIDE CLEAN-UP FACTS
• Dates: April 5-12 • Residents may dispose of residential debris at two dumpsites: Nicholasville: Jessamine County Road Department, Longview Drive Wilmore: Witt Lane To Jessamine County and Nicholasville Residents: If you can not bring your residential debris to the Road Department or Witt Lane dumpsites, please have it ready for curbside pickup by April 5. • No shingles, drywall or commercial debris accepted. • All wet paint cans MUST be mixed with sand and ALL tops removed. NO limbs or brush. For more information: • County residents: 885-5281 • Nicholasville residents: 885-1321 • Wilmore residents: 858-4412
The “Adopt a Road” program gives organizations a chance to participate in the County-Wide Clean-Up. Free bags are provided.
Because of the County-Wide Clean-Up, “tons and tons of what could very well end up dumped by the side of the road, or even thrown over cliffs,” ends up instead at Tri-K Landfill near Stanford, Kentucky. Most anniversaries call for gifts like china, silver or gold, but according to Ogden, the County-Wide CleanUp is already a gift that gives both ways: it gives residents the opportunity to dispose of unwanted appliances, furniture, and other non-commercial trash – and it increases the county’s ability to keep its roads and byways clear of unsightly debris.
SAVING THE DATE
Official Kentucky Wine & Vine Fest
Women’s Health Day