EARLINGTON, Ky. (1/3/14) ― An Earlington city councilman has fired off a round of letters to the residents alleging inappropriate activities by the town's mayor.Councilman Jim Hicks wrote about Mayor Mike Seiber's alleged activities and the effects of them. Several residents received their letters yesterday and more received letters Friday, Jan. 3.
Concerned citizens contacted SurfKY News regarding the letter Friday.
“I have been seeing this for a long time now,” said councilman Jim Hicks. “He’s a dictator, not a mayor. And, he doesn’t involve the city council in anything. This is what prompted me to do this.”
In his letter, Hicks alleges that Seiber lied about living in Earlington to be eligible to run for mayor, that he received a substantial pay increase once he became the mayor, that he purchased shop-ceiling lights with taxpayers' money and that he frequently uses city employees to work on his personal properties while on the city's time.
Hicks told SurfKY News that the mayor had assured the city council prior to the city's wet/dry election that if the city was voted wet, he would not open a liquor store. He then opened Mike's Place.
“Most of the time, city council doesn’t know what bills have been paid,” said Hicks. “When we requested for him to provide us with information, we got copies of the card services a couple times. Then, we missed a few and all Seiber could say was he didn’t have time to give them to us.”
Hicks' letter alleges that the mayor used extra money from coal severance to buy iPads for himself and City Clerk Julie Sellers. Hicks said he's made an open records request for information on the iPad purchases.
Hicks said his attempts to garner interest in an investigation into the mayor's activities have failed.
Hicks' is also frustrated that the city was over budget on Octoberfest by $2,500.
“He went over budget on Octoberfest but doesn't have money to pay the water bills,” said Hicks.
In October, residents of Earlington were shocked to find that their water could possibly be shut off because the city owed the South Hopkins Water District for two months of delinquent invoices amounting to $25,000. The bill was finally paid in December. However, it is unclear where the funds came from to pay it.
Seiber, who has expressed interest in running for the office of state representative, told SurfKY Friday that he has seen Hicks' letter and believes it is politically motivated.
“I have a disgruntled council person it seems,” said Seiber. “The letter is totally absurd. How does one really respond to something like this? It looks like he is more concerned about my political ambition to be state representative. Sounds like the trash talk with Mr. Hicks has begun early, maybe he has ambitions to be mayor. I really don’t know what to say about him except I feel sorry for him, and I hope he gets the help he needs. I want to see him provide facts to back-up his letter. I’ve got my facts.”
Hicks encouraged concerned citizens to attend the next council meeting.
The City of Earlington’s next city council meeting will be at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 14 at City Hall.
SurfKY News Reporter
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