Ponderings from Paducah

Paducah's Population and Crime Statistics

PONDERINGS FROM PADUCAH - February 14, 2024

While many consider Paducah a “small” town, it is a much busier city than people realize. The daily population is often around 100,000 putting us in the category of a mid-size city. 

Despite the influx of people into our community, our crime rate remains low.

Crime in a community is impactful. No matter how minor the offense, it has a negative effect on someone. We are fortunate that, since 2019, the most serious types of crime have dropped by 31 percent. 

Usually around this time each year, internet reports begin to appear stating Paducah is one of the most dangerous cities in Kentucky.  What these reports don’t consider is the population increase Paducah sees on a daily basis. 

When you compare our crime numbers to the daily population and not the census numbers, we are doing well. Also, the majority of our crime rate is driven by retail theft due to our being a shopping hub. 

We are fortunate that even with the daily surge of population, we are able to keep our small-town feeling.

Paducah continues to be a safe place to visit and raise a family. 

(written by Paducah Police Chief Brian Laird)

Crime Statistics Information


Changes since 1991

PONDERINGS FROM PADUCAH - January 19, 2024

I joined the City of Paducah, Kentucky, as Finance Director in 1991. I was a 32-year old man looking for a good job and a place that I could make a difference. 

At the time, the City had some computer technology but not much. We had an IBM System 36 with 400MB that we doubled to 800MB for $10,000 and thought we’d changed the world. Plus, we had a couple of desktop computers.

Over the next three decades, the City changed from the ‘Stone Age’ to the ‘Electronic Age’ adding over 300 computers and acquiring software connecting us to the world.   

City operations and staff have evolved into a more professional, well-trained workforce with the tools to conduct modern day business.

As compared to what I experienced in 1991, this has helped us become better thinkers and planners and more customer and business centered.

To accomplish everything, we set high expectations for staff. We try to hire the best, expect integrity, and get out of the way of innovative people wanting to make a difference.

I encourage you to check out the various financial information available on the City’s website including the award-winning (32 years) Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (audit), the Popular Annual Financial Report (PAFR), annual budget books, and local tax information.

Plus, you can look up your property tax bill on the website and pay it online from anywhere in the world.

We’re working on other ways to bring the City operations into the relevant future. The difference made since 1991 is astounding! 

(written by Finance Director Jonathan W. Perkins, CPA)


Downtown Paducah and Paducah Main Street - A Review of 2023

PONDERINGS FROM PADUCAH - December 15, 2023

Revitalizing the heart of Paducah holds immense significance not only for the local community but also in attracting talent and employers to the area.

The City of Paducah prioritizes downtown development by offering incentives and support through Paducah Main Street, a place-based economic development program that focuses on historic preservation.

During 2023, public investments included $60,000 to help create new upper-story living spaces, $75,000 for new business grants that supported 13 new businesses, and $30,000 towards roof stabilization.

These efforts spurred over $4.4 million in private investment in the downtown community.

Main Street also hosted eight promotional events, including the award-winning Cocktail Trail, to bolster the district's image and support local businesses.

With ample opportunity and potential, downtown Paducah is an excellent destination for those looking to invest or open a business.

(written by Director of Planning Nic Hutchison)


Cybersecurity and Multi-factor Authentication

PONDERINGS FROM PADUCAH - November 15, 2023

Cyberattacks are on the rise exponentially. More and more online systems are breached each year, stealing thousands of user’s credentials.

In this day of most everything transacted online or connected to the internet, the best cyberprotection for yourself or your business is to enable multi-factor authentication (MFA).

MFA is especially important for online accounts where you store bank or credit card information or personally identifiable details such as your date of birth or social security number.

Multi-factor authentication requires more than one method, not a password alone, of authenticating yourself.

When MFA is enabled, a text message, email, or six-digit token from a smartphone app can be used to verify that it’s truly you trying to access your accounts instead of a hacker.

MFA provides protection in the event of a data breach. If a hacker gains access to your username and password, they still can’t access your account because they can’t authenticate without your extra layer of verification.

To protect Paducah, the City’s Technology Department is rolling out MFA to its team members to provide extra layers of protection. I urge you to seek out MFA wherever possible.

(written by Technology Department Director Eric Stuber)


311 Online Portal and App

PONDERINGS FROM PADUCAH - October 17, 2023

In order to stay relevant, businesses must connect with customers via the platforms that their customers use.

This is true even for city governments.

We want to ensure that we are offering a variety of ways for people to connect with the City to request services. With this goal in mind, we launched the Paducah 311 online portal and app in January 2022.

These platforms allow citizens to go online or download an app to enter requests for city services like brush pickup, code enforcement, and potholes (to name a few).

The response has been phenomenal.

Since the launch, we have received over 3,250 requests for service through the portal and app. We still take requests via phone calls, but this response shows that we are filling a gap and allowing our citizens to connect with us in a way that works for them.

Paducah may not be a business, but we do have customers.

We may not be selling a product, but we are selling an experience.

And I would argue that the experiences we have in the City that we call home are some of the most important.

(written by City Clerk and Director of Customer Experience Lindsay Parish)


City Government Month - September 2023

PONDERINGS FROM PADUCAH - September 19, 2023

There’s a day or month to celebrate anything. This month includes Labor Day, National Preparedness Month, World Tourism Day, and even Ask a Stupid Question Day.

Another September celebration is City Government Month. Before you say ho-hum, this post is to honor my more than 300 co-workers.

When I first think of City government, I think of services – policing, fire protection, solid waste collection, street repair, parks and recreation activities, etc.

But, that’s not the whole story.  

City government is Officer Blake Quinn, Deputy Fire Marshal April Tinsman, Grants Administrator Hope Reasons, Recreation Superintendent Taylor Morsching, and hundreds of great people working for Paducah.

You more than likely know at least one person who works for the city. This month, ask them what they do and how they work to make Paducah better.  

Then, share the knowledge. That’s a great way to celebrate City Government Month.

(Written by 16-year employee, Communications Manager Pam Spencer)