At its regularly scheduled meeting Dec. 19, the Casey County Fiscal Court addressed questions about the Lincoln County Animal Shelter contract, approved several construction repairs, approved a few items in jail business, and heard the sheriff’s report.

In a recent story about the new animal control policies in the county, Casey County Judge/Executive Randy Dial said that he was informed by Lincoln County that the animal shelter there was full, and it could no longer accept stray dogs from here.

This news came just a few days after new Animal Control Officer (ACO) Eric Pruner had taken the job and was busy learning about his new duties as the ACO. At the fiscal court meeting, a group of concerned citizens addressed the court in order to find out more information about the ACO and how stray dogs were going to be handled.

The county has set up temporary kennels to house the stray dogs until they can find a more permanent place to put them. Jean Wolf was concerned that all the stray dogs picked up would be put into the same kennel. However, Dial said each dog would be kept separately from the others.

“I’m still working with other counties trying to find something permanent,” Dial said. “We do have a new animal control officer that has picked up some animals. Some were taken to Garrard County Animal Shelter. They agreed to take those, and I think they’ve already found homes for those animals.”

Wolf also asked about veterinary care for the animals. She asked whether they would be treated by a veterinarian or be euthanized.

“If it’s something that’s going to be a major surgery and the likelihood of survival is slim, then they will probably be euthanized,” Dial said. “If it’s something that’s minor, we will treat them. We will do our best to find homes for them as we have them.”

The current procedure for reporting strays is to call the Casey County Judge/Executive office at 606-787-6154, or the Casey County Sheriff’s Office at 606-787-6821 during business hours, or the 24-hour non-emergency dispatch number at 606-787-9411.

Dial said they are currently looking at some buildings in the county to house the animals while they look for a more permanent solution with another animal shelter. A more long-term goal would be to build an animal shelter in Casey County, but Dial said that isn’t likely going to happen in the future.

He said he spoke with Taylor County Judge/Executive Barry Smith, and their budget for their animal shelter is $300,000 per year.

“To be honest with you, our own animal shelter here will be a last resort because of the cost of it,” Dial said. “If we can’t find a suitable partner, then we will take care of the animals and use our best efforts to adopt them.”

District 2 Magistrate Bart Woodrum showed his support during the meeting by commending the group for being passionate about a great cause.

“We want the best for all these animals,” Woodrum said. “We don’t want to mistreat them. We just found ourselves in a situation, and it seems like several surrounding counties have had an influx of animals come in. We’ve just got to work with what we’ve got right now.”

In general business, Dial said the court had received one bid for a surplus Chevy Tahoe cruiser for the sheriff’s department. The bid was received from the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office for $25,000. District 3 Magistrate Robby Murphy made a motion to accept the bid with Woodrum seconding the motion.

Also in general business, Dial said Debbie Vaughn is retiring from the Judge/Executive’s Office. He recommended the magistrates hire Cathy Carman when she retires. Murphy made a motion to hire Carman with District 4 Magistrate Troy Sanders seconding the motion.

Dial also asked the court for approval to seek bids for repairs to the courthouse. He said water is leaking between the walls where the addition was built in the 1960s and is starting to leak into the clerk’s office. Woodrum made a motion to seek bids for the repair with District 1 Magistrate Cecil Roy seconding the motion.

In jail business, Dial said they have worked out a contract with Lincoln County to house their inmates at a rate of $35.34 per day. He asked for authorization to sign the contract. Murphy made a motion to accept the contract with Sanders seconding the motion.

Also in jail business, Dial asked to seek bids to repair some roof leaks at the jail. Woodrum made a motion to seek bids for repairs with Roy seconding the motion.

Newly elected Casey County Jailer Mike Woodrum also reported that the jail currently held 224 inmates.

As for the sheriff’s report, Sheriff Chad Weddle reported in the month of December that the sheriff’s office had driven 12,056 miles, served 11 warrants, opened 12 cases, worked 679 hours of court security, worked 16 accidents, recorded five DUI’s, inspected 45 vehicles, made 37 arrests, gave 51 citations for non-arrestable offenses, gave 88 total citations, gave 59 subpoenas, summons, and evictions, responded to 659 calls, and worked a total of 1,651 hours.

Weddle also gave a yearly report for the sheriff’s department. In 2022, the sheriff’s office drove 154,868 miles, served 353 warrants, opened 175 cases, worked 6,949.5 hours of court security, worked 163 accidents, recorded 41 DUI’s, inspected 627 vehicles, made 532 arrests, gave 980 citations for non-arrestable offenses, gave 1,520 total citations, gave 851 subpoenas, summons, and evictions, responded to 6,425 calls, and worked a total of 18,304 hours.

The next Casey County Fiscal Court meeting will be Feb. 20 at 5 p.m. at the Casey County Judicial Center.