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Splash pad coming to park

With the near-decade long troubles with the McCreary County Park development finally resolved, the Park Board has been given approval for a new addition to the facility- a splash pad.

Former Park Board Chairman J.C. Egnew, along with his wife Azalie, appeared at the McCreary County Fiscal Court meeting Thursday night to update the Court on the latest development since the County had finally met all terms of the mitigation work outlined by the Kentucky Division of Water.

Egnew stated a mutual release had been drafted for the County and Weddle Enterprises, the company contracted to develop the park that would end any potential claims from either party in the future.

County Attorney Conley Chaney informed the Court that the County could potentially bring suit against Weddle to recoup some of the costs with the mitigation, but Weddle could also potentially sue the County for money owed from the park development.

Chaney said both sides could have possible cases, and could not predict what would happen if either went to trial. The release, he added, removes that possibility for both sides – agreeing to forgo any legal claims – and allowing future park development to proceed.

The Fiscal Court had previously set aside more than $200,000 in a special account to go toward the possibility of a settlement with Weddle Contractors, but with the agreement in place that funding can now be released back to the park’s General Fund.

With the Court agreeing to the terms of the release, Egnew asked for permission to use some of that funding to purchase and install a splash pad at the park site.

With an estimated cost of between $75,000 and $100,000, plus with Egnew’s pledge to donate up to half of the cost himself, there would be more than enough in the escrow fund to make the purchase.

Egnew stated installing a pool would not be cost effective at this time due to the high costs associated with maintenance and staffing, but a splash pad would be a great alternative due to its self-contained nature and would be easier to maintain.

Ms. Egnew, a big advocate of the project, noted the County needed more things for children to do. She was a driving force in developing the plans and getting estimates from various companies to build the splash pad.

She stated a 40-foot by 30-foot concrete pad, with accompanying pump room would be able to be installed and operational within a few weeks of the project starting.

The splash pad will feature water jets coursing through holes in the pad, along with several interactive devices for children to play in and on.

In other Fiscal Court action, the Court opened and accepted a bid to purchase and install a 4-post vehicle lift for the county road garage.

The winning bid of $24,386.56 came from Lubrication Equipment Services out of Knoxville. That bid was about $2,000 less than the other two bids received.

The McCreary County Fiscal Court is scheduled to meet again on May 12 at 6:00 p.m.

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