Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster

Earlington Mayor Addresses Councilman's Critical Letter

seiber 300EARLINGTON, Ky. (1/15/14) — The Earlington City Council discussed new tourism opportunities and Mayor Michael Seiber responded to a letter circulated by councilman Jim Hicks recently sent to Earlington residents during its regular meeting Tuesday, Jan. 14.

Seiber addressed the allegations made in Hicks' letter that Seiber received a $6,000 pay raise a year, took the shop lights out of the old K.U. building and installed them in his own personal garage, used city employees to work on his own personal property, bought iPads for both him and the city clerk, used taxpayers money to pay for the city clerk’s education and opened a liquor store.

Seiber told the council that in April of 2008, a year after he was elected mayor, a meeting was held to approve the suggested salaries for both the mayor and city councilmen. It was agreed that the mayor should receive $576.95 per month and city council members would receive $116.50 per month. Both the mayor and council members cannot receive a pay raise without a vote, he said.

Seiber said that in his first term, half of his salary — totaling $2,203.40 — was donated to the city to be used in the benevolence fund to help residents of Earlington pay their bills.

Seiber said he received a letter from the fire marshal saying the old K.U. building had been condemned and needed to be torn down. None of his personal property came from the building and that if and when city employees were on his property, they were doing city work, he said.

Seiber also said that iPads are considered to be office equipment and the money received from coal severance funds could be used towards office equipment.

“An iPad is considered office equipment and I do not have a computer in the mayor’s office,” said Seiber. “I’m not here 40 hours a week; I took the option of purchasing an iPad to do my job as mayor.”

Seiber told the council that it is a benefit to the city by having a certified city clerk, which saves it money on its insurance provider by 3 percent off the deductible, and that Seller's continued education is necessary.

The building that is now being used as Mike’s Place had been in the hands of a real estate agent for six months, so Seiber decided to take the opportunity to do something with it, he said.

Hicks' letter also criticized Seiber for his opening a liquor store.

“Yes, the city of Earlington had a wet/dry vote, and I said that I would never open a liquor store. I probably said that, I’ll give him that one,” said Seiber. “It was a business decision, I changed my mind and I decided to open a liquor store. I’m proud of that fact. This letter was a flat out misinterpretation on Mr. Hicks' view.”

After the meeting, a member of the audience asked Seiber why he wasn’t allowing Hicks to provide the proof of his allegations when Seiber had said to the media that he wanted to see his proof. She also asked him why he felt these concerns weren’t being made a public issue.

“He has channels for that and city council is not the place to do that,” said Seiber. “Whatever he feels the need to do; if he’s suggesting criminal activity, I suggest he get law enforcement. I think this is a waste of the council’s time; a waste of my time. This council is conducted to do city business; we have issues with water sewage. To address false allegations that I already addressed is a waste of city’s time. So, we will leave it at that.”

Concerns about the water and sewage were also questioned.

“I’ve called Frankfort to see what we can do. Hopefully, they will get back to us at the end of January,” said Seiber. “That is one of my goals, to fix the infrastructure of Earlington. We are trying to find out why we have a $9,000 water bill and a $12,000 sewage bill, when sewer should be $2,500 and water $2,000 give or take. Instead, we are paying almost $20,000 due by the 20th of this month and that’s too much for this place.”

Another audience member asked why Seiber used taxpayer’s money to continue the city clerk’s education.

“When I hired Mrs. Sellers to be your city clerk, she took upon herself to be the best city clerk she could possibly be and to get certified to save the city some money, which we save on insurance premiums,” said Seiber. “We are not paying for her education; we are paying for her trip for her training. If anybody works at a job that’s being sent somewhere; the city’s attorney for instance, when we sent him to training, the city picked up that bill.”

Another concerned member asked why there was no law enforcement.

“That police department costs us $127,000 from the city’s general fund,” said Seiber. “Now, once the city’s financial situation gets corrected, that’s something we can look at replacing. But right now, the city can’t afford that. That’s the bottom line, it’s all about finances.”

As part of bringing more tourist opportunities to Hopkins County, the city of Earlington received a $100,000 grant for its Loch Mary ATV Park. The city also received $10,000 from Yamaha and $50,000 from recreational trail funds.

“What some of you don’t realize is this is sort of unique to Hopkins County,” said City Attorney Keith Cartwright. “We had a group come to Hopkins County and told us we have something unique to this county that you don’t have anywhere else — a place to ride four-wheelers. So, they told us we needed to start promoting this place as a tourism destination.”

Last month, Seiber and Sellers made a presentation to the tourism commission asking for an additional $10,000, which the commission granted to build a road that will lead to a new building at the park.

Councilman Phillip Hunt was impressed by the number of people who showed at Tuesday's council meeting.

“I wish all the citizens of Earlington would get more involved in the city government,” said Hunt after the meeting. “It’s their government, too. I just wished that they wouldn’t wait until a bad situation happens before they get involved.”

Amber Averitt
SurfKY News Reporter
Photo by Amber Averitt

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

3/13 - 16
3/13 - 16
button coupons

Stock Report

1 DOW 18,030.21
+6.04 (0.03%)    
2 S&P 2,081.88
-0.29 (-0.01%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,773.47
+8.05 (0.17%)    
3/13 - 16
3/13 - 16
button classifieds

In Other News...

Winter Birding and Eagle Viewing Opportunities Offered

GOLDEN POND, Ky. (12/24/14) — Land Between The Lakes National Recreation Area offers the public eagle viewing… Read More

Bison Auction Set for Jan. 31 at LBL

GOLDEN POND, Ky. (12/24/14) — A public auction to reduce the size of Land Between The Lakes’ bison herds will be held… Read More
3/13 - 16

Most Read This Week

December 24, 2014 11228

Christmas Eve Bloody Brawl Erupts on Dulin Street

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Doreen Dennis
December 25, 2014 7439

Gift Returns Done Right

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
December 19, 2014 6228

Armstrong Mine to Layoff 39 by End of Day

in Top News For All Sites by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
December 19, 2014 5264

Dawson Springs Man Charged with Sexual Abuse of…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Detective Sean McCance
December 19, 2014 4733

Woman Flown to St. Mary's after Two-Car Collision

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Trooper Stu Recke
December 19, 2014 3958

Vehicle Fire Causes Traffic Back-Up on Pennyrile

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Doreen Dennis
December 23, 2014 3858

Couple's Alleged Dispute over Blanket Leads to…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 19, 2014 3680

Vehicle Explodes into Flames on Pride Avenue

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Gwen Smith
December 23, 2014 3335

Alleged Theft at Walmart Sends Two to Jail

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 25, 2014 3329

Arrests Made After Dulin Avenue Christmas Eve…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Officer C.P. Haynie

Stories Trending Today

December 24, 2014 11228

Christmas Eve Bloody Brawl Erupts on Dulin Street

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Doreen Dennis
December 25, 2014 7439

Gift Returns Done Right

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
December 25, 2014 3329

Arrests Made After Dulin Avenue Christmas Eve…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Officer C.P. Haynie
December 23, 2014 2869

Disturbance Results in Vehicle, Foot Pursuit,…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Officer Tyler Russell
December 25, 2014 2839

Crime Stoppers Top Most Wanted - December 25, 2014

in Video by Crime Stoppers
December 23, 2014 2592

Hopkins County Grand Jury Indictments

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Karen McKnight
December 24, 2014 1686

KCC Hosts 'Gift of Life' Opportunity

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
December 24, 2014 1611

'Frozen' Plays to One Last Packed House at Living…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
December 24, 2014 1587

2014 Looking Back: World Saddened at Death of…

in Top News For All Sites by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
December 24, 2014 1508

Statewide Broadband Initiative Launched

in Top News For All Sites by Office of the Governor

SurfKY News Group, Inc.
Corporate Office & Studio
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431
270.452.2727 (phone)
  •  270.452.2249 (fax)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social fbsocial twsocial yt
social gpsocial flrsocial rss