City Commission Meeting Highlights - June 11, 2024

Date of Release: 
June 11, 2024


Fiscal Year 2025 Budget

The Paducah Board of Commissioners approved the Fiscal Year 2025 Budget which is effective July 1. The FY2025 budget is slightly more than $120.8 million dollars when all funding accounts and transfers are considered. Of that amount, the City’s main operating fund, the General Fund, is $57.6 million, and the Investment Fund is $8.3 million. A few of the budget highlights are as follows:

  • Includes funding for City Commission priorities including $1 million for housing initiatives and approximately $1.2 million for stormwater projects.
  • Increases funding for street rehabilitation projects to $2 million in addition to the amount received from the state fuel tax.
  • Includes all annual debt service payment obligations.
  • Includes 4% wage adjustments as contractually obligated for IAFF, FOP, and AFSCME and 4% for non- represented full-time employees.
  • Allows for the minimum 10% reserve requirement in the General, Investment and Solid Waste funds.
  • Uses unreserved cash balances for the General, Investment, Fleet Lease Trust, and Bond funds to help balance the budget.
  • Includes State mandated pension contributions.
  • Includes appropriations for numerous outside agencies.
  • Assumes a 4% increase in the real estate property tax levy (to be voted on in a separate ordinance this fall). Please note that as the property valuations increase, the property tax rate often declines.


Real Estate Parcel Fee for the Funding of 911 Services, Maintenance, and Equipment

The Paducah Board of Commissioners introduced an ordinance creating a real estate parcel fee for the funding of 911 services, maintenance, and equipment. At the previous meeting, the Board approved an interlocal cooperation agreement with McCracken County for the provision of joint 911 services. The City and County will be adopting the same rate structure. Currently, the 911 system is heavily subsidized from the City and County’s operating budgets since the per-month charges on landlines and cellphones are not adequate to cover 911 operational costs. Therefore, the City and County are introducing a fee structure that is permitted by Kentucky Revised Statutes. Kenton County, Kentucky’s fee structure was used as a model. The City and County cannot collect more in fees than it costs to operate, maintain, and upgrade the 911 system.

This ordinance establishes an annual parcel fee on all occupied individual residential units and on all occupied individual commercial, religious, charitable, educational, and public use units located within the territorial limits of the City of Paducah. Vacant lots and unoccupied structures would not be assessed this fee. The annual parcel fees would be included on property tax bills beginning this fall with the fee structure as follows for occupied units:

  • Residential Units $45 – each house, apartment, duplex or quadplex unit, or mobile home is a separate residential unit
  • Public Use Units $35 - emergency service, governmental, religious, charitable, and educational parcels
  • Super Commercial Retail Unit (contains structure in excess of 25,000 sq. ft.) $1,550
  • Large Commercial Retail Unit (contains structure between 7,500 and 25,000 sq. ft.) $860
  • Medium Commercial Retail Unit (contains structure between 2,500 and 7,500 sq. ft.) $325
  • Small Commercial Retail Unit (structure between 1 and 2,500 sq. ft.) $210
  • Non-Retail Commercial Units $150 – this category is for parking lots and garages

The rates will adjust annually based upon the Consumer Price Index. The due dates will be the same as the property tax due dates. For this first year, owners of occupied rental units will be eligible to claim a credit of $22.50 per unit against the annual fee due. The owners would need to apply by August 1 to get a credit. This ordinance also creates the five-member 911 Parcel Fee Appeals board. This board would work to resolve any claims of incorrect classifications or determinations of occupancy of property.


Paducah Sports Park Discussion

McCracken County Community Development Project Manager Steve Ervin provided an update on the Paducah Sports Park which will be constructed at the former Bluegrass Downs site and Stuart Nelson Park. Earlier this year the City and County approved the construction documents with the project placed out to bid this spring. At this time, bids have been submitted with bids received for site work, buildings, food and beverage equipment, lighting, and field turf. Ervin said that on Monday the McCracken County Sports Tourism Commission approved recommending the construction contracts for the project to the City and County.

At January’s meeting, it was announced that the estimated cost of the facility’s construction is $65 million. However, the recent bids exceeded that amount leading to a need to remove some design elements at this time including the grandstand rehabilitation, the championship field adjacent to the grandstand, a small building, maintenance area, and the basketball and pickleball areas. These features could be redesigned and added at a later date.

After these deductions, the design includes five rectangular fields and four diamond-shaped fields that can be configured in a variety of ways and sizes. These multi-use, synthetic turf fields can incorporate soccer, baseball, softball, rugby, or football. Other design features include a memorial complex to Dr. Stuart Nelson, shelter and restroom facilities, concession facilities, picnic and playground areas, and a significant amount of parking.

As outlined in the interlocal agreement, the City Commission and Fiscal Court have a 20 day window to accept the McCracken County Sports Tourism Commission’s recommendation to proceed.

After a one-year construction period, the goal is for the facility to open in 2025. Over the past four years, the project has included research and analysis, stakeholder engagement, and master planning. The Paducah Sports Park has the following principles

  • Become a regional destination for athletic tournament play.
  • Provide high quality athletic experiences for the local community.
  • Further develop the unique brand and identity of Paducah and McCracken County.

With an expectation of holding 35 to 40 tournaments per year, the McCracken County Sports Tourism Commission estimates that the facility could generate a local economic impact of approximately $130 million in its first five years of use.


Approval of Interim Planning Director

The Board approved an employment agreement with Carol Gault to serve as Interim Planning Director for a period of six months with a beginning date of Thursday, June 13. Gault is a former City Commission and Paducah Main Street Director.


Development Agreement with C.I.R.C.O. Construction for 318 Broadway Street

The Board approved a development agreement with C.I.R.C.O. Construction for the city-owned property at 318 Broadway. The City purchased the property in 2018 which contained a deteriorated building, the Kresge Building. In 2019, the City secured a contractor to raze the structure which had been deemed a hazard. Under the development agreement’s terms, C.I.R.C.O. is purchasing the vacant lot from the City of Paducah for $10,000 with plans to revitalize the space into a multi-use green space to include outdoor seating, a playground, dog area, a bar structure, music area with amphitheater seating, vendor space, and landscaping. The bar is to be owned and operated by Over/Under. The developer also will be adding restroom facilities. As outlined in the development agreement, after the design is reviewed and approved, the developer will initiate construction within 30 days of the property transfer with 15 months to complete the construction. Dru Hardin and Blake Calhoun with Over/Under attended the meeting to show the Board concept drawings of the space.


Accept $3.5 Million Appropriation for BUILD Grant Project

The Board approved a municipal order accepting the $3.5 million appropriation for the BUILD Grant project outlined in House Bill 1 as approved during the State’s legislative session earlier this year. In 2019, the City received notification that it would be receiving a $10.4 million Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) Grant to improve the riverfront area of downtown Paducah with a project scope that includes a riverboat excursion pier, transportation enhancements, and improvements to the river side of the floodwall in a general area between the Paducah-McCracken County Convention & Expo Center and Broadway. The City of Paducah was thrilled that additional funding for the project was approved in this year’s session of the Kentucky General Assembly.

In May, archaeological surveying work was completed on the river side of the floodwall. The surveying work did not find any items of archeological significance. Currently, the BUILD grant project is out for bid with bids due July 9. Learn more about the BUILD grant project.


Reasonable Accommodation for Recovery Homes

Earlier this year, the Kentucky General Assembly amended Kentucky Revised Statutes to require a recovery residence that provides on-site-clinical services or access to on-site clinical services to be certified through the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services. After receiving a favorable recommendation from the Planning Commission at its May 6 meeting, the Paducah Board of Commissioners approved an ordinance at this meeting to add a new section to Paducah’s zoning code called Sec. 126-88 Reasonable Accommodation for Recovery Homes. The City’s code is in addition to the State process. It outlines an application process through the Planning Department. The new code section is to provide a streamlined approach for the approval of Recovery Homes, while protecting the rights of individuals with disabilities and the character of the surrounding neighborhood.


Additional Meeting Information

  • Carol Young reappointed to the Paducah-McCracken County Senior Citizens Board.
  • Municipal Orders approved for the Position and Pay Schedule and the Job Grade Schedule.