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Louisa-Lawrence Co, KY

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AUGUST 14, 2015


An open statement from Mayor Harold Slone concerning wastewater problems;

Louisa mayor Harold SloneLOUISA, KY - Tuesday night at the regular Louisa City Council meeting the mayor made a statement concerning the Louisa Waste Water Treatment Plant which has drawn many complaints of odor through the years.

“I have spent the last several weeks looking into the current status of our sewer plant including odor problems, compliance issues, mechanical failures, management practices, and staffing.” said Mayor Harold Slone. “Let me first say I fully understand the odor complaints,  I live here too, I ride my bike at night and the odor is horrible at times and I want you to know this will now be a top priority of mine to get the situation addressed to the fullest extent of our capabilities.” 

“Here are some of the facts:

  • The plant was updated in the 1980’s so even the new part is now 30 plus years old.”
  • The plant has been understaffed for quite some time leading to issues of maintenance and upkeep as well.

"We all know we need a new plant but for the short term we must address the current issues and get the plant running effectively while we seek funding for a new plant in the future,” Slone said. “After taking a long hard look at the situation I have some good news and some bad news concerning the annoying odor situation.”

“A major malfunction of the clarifier in April gave no option but the plant be shut down and pumped out as to make repairs. The city submitted a plan to Ky Division of Water as to how the procedure would take place which was approved," Slone said.

"Although operators had no choice this procedure created a worse than usual odor problem that has improved but will not go away until that material is worked back through the process, so what im saying is it will probably have to get worse again for a short period before it can get better.”

"The (wastewater) plant was updated in the 80’s so even the new part is now 30 plus years old. it has been understaffed for quite some time leading to issues of maintenance and upkeep as well," mayor harold Slone said in a prepared statement.

“I have spent most of the day with inspectors from the DOW today (Thursday) and have had several conversations with consultants and engineers over the past few weeks and we are finally making some progress,” the mayor said. "Although we will not be able to operate this type of plant without some odor, what we have experienced since April is unacceptable and we believe can be greatly improved.”

“Im asking you to bear with us through this process over the next few weeks then we should see improvement.”

The mayor told council that several areas of the plant are not functioning fully and need immediate attention which he said was now underway.

“Richard Howerton, with Howerton Engineering from Greenup, Ky was on hand to confirm what the mayor reported and made himself available for questions and advice to council.

“Staffing is another issue, after a recent laborer resigned we have had only one operator and he has had some health issues as of late which has limited his ability to work the hours needed to cover the vacancy. The DOW is requiring us to have 2 full time and at least one part time worker specifically for waste water collection and treatment.”

An employee with two years experience began work on Wednesday August 12 and will be a certified  operator in October,”  Slone said. The Mayor says he is in the process of forming a task force to work with him through this process including some county officials.

“This is a major concern for our city and county to grow and I am calling on some knowledgeable people to help me with this.”

“In closing I just want you to know this will be a top priority for myself and the city. Regardless of what has to be done we just have to do it, we can’t stand the odor problems forever and we can’t grow without waste water treatment.”

The mayor also pledged to keep the council and the community fully updated in the coming weeks.

AUGUST 12, 2015


Tim Robinson's Addiction Recovery Care victim of theft, civil charge says

Derek Hinkle  Tim Robinson

LOUISA, Ky. -- A breach of security by an unknown party has caused a large sum of money to go missing with a local Louisa business.

According to a civil suit filed in Lawrence Circuit Court on July 30th, an unknown party breached the security of Addiction Recovery Care’s (“ARC”) corporate email system and illegally obtained access to the corporate CEO, Tim Robinson, Jr’s email account.

The unknown party then fraudulently misrepresented Robinson and directed the Chief Financial Officer, Derek Hinkle, to complete a wire transfer of $38,900 to a bank account at Wells Fargo Bank. According to the civil suit, the account belonged to Vaughn Robinson of Lithonia, Georgia. 

Although contacting Wells Fargo Bank through multiple staff and departments seeking for a hold to be placed on the transfer, the bank refused to do so; this made the funds available to those perpetrating the fraud.

However, the same day the suit was filed; a request for a verified emergency motion for temporary injunction was granted by Circuit Court Judge John D. Preston which placed a hold on the account preventing the release of the funds. 

The general counsel for ARC stated that they were unable to comment at this time regarding this matter, because it is still pending litigation. 

A hearing is currently set for August 14th.

AUGUST 9, 2015



Just wanted to let everyone know the arrangements for the services of our much loved Phil Ratliff, we realize that so many will want to honor his life! The services will be held in Charlotte, North Carolina. The viewing will be this Friday evening August 14th at McEwen Funeral home 6300 Mallard Creek Road Charlotte, NC and the funeral service will be at University Hills Baptist Church 1500 Suther Road Charlotte, NC 28213 Saturday the 15th at 2:30 with a memorial service to follow Saturday evening, at the college.

--from Michelle Ratliff Skaggs...via Tara Cook's FB.

As of now Phil's funeral will be in North Carolina. The viewing will be Friday and funeral on Saturday. We are not sure yet where it will be held at and as soon as we find out and the address we will pass it along to everyone. Just wanted to give those who want to go the opportunity to make arrangements and start planning. Prayers are welcomed!!

--Annetta Ratliff Kirk, FAMILY MEMBER

See wonderful story about Phil's life by Woody Woodruff of the Herd Insider HERE

Phil Ratliff 2015 June 13 Haley's graduation with Jenni and Dylan 

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- After a weeklong battle by doctors to save his life Charlotte University 49ers O-Line coach Phillip Ratliff, 44, originally from Louisa, Ky. has died.

A pall was cast over Lawrence County and much of the area as the word spread that one of the most popular and  talented athletes in the tri-state area had been taken off life support. Dozens upon dozens of sympathy messages instantly appeaed on social media from friends, teammates, former players and fans as well as family members as they learned of Ratliff's passing. The University of Charlotte athletic department officially confirmed his passing at 4:35 p.m. Sunday.

Ratliff was injured while on a coaching retreat outside Charlotte, when he was seriously injured in a boating accident, a close family friend said this morning. Doctors removed Ratliff, one of the most popular sports figures in Lawrence County sports history, from life support Saturday and informed the family that there was no sign that he could recover. 

Funeral arrangements have not been announced but the school issued this statement this afternoon.

"....thecharlotte49ers We regretfully announce the passing of coach Phil Ratliff - an amazing man that was loved by all who knew him," the message said. "He was surrounded by family and friends.  His adoring wife, Jenni, was by his side. He was an amazing man and was loved by all who knew him."

"We appreciate the continued thoughts and prayers for the Ratliff family.  They are beyond grateful for the overwhelming love and support. The family appreciates your respect for their privacy during this difficult period. Memorial service arrangements will be forthcoming..."
Marshall University released the following statement regarding his passing.
"We want to extend our deepest condolences to all of Phil's family, friends and the entire Charlotte 49ers football program," the statement said. "He was a true Son of Marshall, one of our all-time greats and a man who was truly respected in the coaching profession. Our program, university and community mourns his loss today."
Ratliff, was a two-time All-American at Marshall who also coached the Herd for five years.

Eddie Michael, a former Lawrence County Supt. who coached Ratliff and watched him grow up said today that he was "one of the nicest, most sincere and best educators I have ever seen."

Michael said Ratliff treated everyone the same - with respect. "He just had a way about him that everybody recognized he cared about them no matter who they were," Michael said. "He was a special person and athlete and will truly be missed."

See a gallery of photos from Ratliff's career by the Herald-Dispatch HERE.

See details of his career on separate Lazer story.

You can read a poignant account of Phil's influence by his friend and admirer Blake Preece HERE