Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

January 4, 2013

Charles jumps right in mix after being sworn in as Ashland's mayor

ASHLAND — Chuck Charles presided over a slate of mostly routine business after being sworn in as mayor Thursday, and afterwards talked about plans for Ashland, including one of his first initiatives, a neighborhood walk program.

“I’m right in the middle of being humble and excited,” Charles said while roaming commission chambers to shake hands with his supporters. “There are so many expectations. I hope I can live up to the expectations.”

Starting this spring, Charles will schedule hour-long Saturday strolls through each of Ashland’s neighborhoods and talk to residents about their own issues. He wants to revive the close-knit nature of the traditional neighborhood he grew up in, he said. “We knew everybody. Now neighbors hardly know who lives next door.”

Charles has identified 15 neighborhoods and appointed ambassadors in each to help smooth the way.

“They can walk with the mayor for an hour instead of them coming to the city building,” he said. “It’s a way to bring people back together and discuss initiatives and community problems.”

He will kick off the program April 6 with a walk through downtown, and plans to combine it with a downtown cleanup initiative he described as a cross between the U.S. 23 cleanup and the yearly Repair Affair. “We want to look like we’re ready for business,” he said.

The following week he will conduct a downtown business tour, the idea for which came to him while walking around looking at storefronts. The tour will be a way to market what downtown businesses have for sale, he said.

Nurturing existing businesses is a top economic priority, he said. Besides helping the commercial economy it will add to the city’s tax base.

Charles said Ashland is facing budgetary challenges that will require some belt-tightening and streamlining to increase efficiency. “That’s one of the things I’m good at,” he said. Among the city’s top budgetary issues are insurance and pension costs.

He said he wants to make Ashland a “city of choice” and not just for current residents. “We set our goals high as a place to live, work and play. I want a guy sitting in Arizona to say, ‘I’d like to live in Ashland.’”

Also sworn in Thursday were the four commission members, incumbents Larry Brown, Kevin Gunderson and Marty Gute, and incoming Commissioner Cheryl Spriggs. Spriggs has been on the commission before, but left in the last term to run for state representative.

MIKE JAMES can be reached at mjames@dailyindependent.com or

(606) 326-2652.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • News in brief, 07/24/14

    A Fleming County man was arrested on sex charges Tuesday by the Kentucky State Police.

    July 23, 2014

  • Boyd/Greenup backpack program turns 10

    For 10 years, the Ashland Alliance Young Professionals Association has been helping children start their school year off right.

    July 23, 2014

  • Area water plants recognized

    Water treatment plants across the state were recognized for consistently producing drinking water in 2013 that exceeded state and federal water quality standards, including the Rattlesnake Ridge Water District in Olive Hill and six others.

    July 23, 2014

  • City gives wastewater treatment plant operations to Greenup agency

    During joint special meetings of the Greenup Joint Sewer Agency and the Wurtland city commission on Tuesday, Wurtland agreed to hand over operations of its wastewater treatment plant to the agency.
    Pending the signing and approval of certain legal documents, plant operations will officially be under the GJSA on Aug. 1.

    July 23, 2014

  • Edelen studies fiscal health of rural hospitals

    On the fourth stop of his listening tour to address the fiscal health of rural hospitals, Adam Edelen said the crowd in Morehead was the largest he has seen yet.
    The big attendance attests to how seriously the region regards the issue of sustainability of local hospitals, he said.

    July 23, 2014

  • Putnam renovations ‘coming together’ as football season approaches

    Locker rooms are beginning to take shape at Putnam Stadium as rebuilding of the venerable arena nears completion.
    Workers are readying concrete forms on the home side and grading the site on the visitors’ side and soon will erect the structures, the goal to have them ready to use for the first home game of the 2014 season Aug. 22.

    July 23, 2014

  • Huntington man wanted for armed robbery

    The Ashland Police Department is searching for an 18-year-old Huntington man who was involved in an armed robbery last month.

    July 23, 2014

  • Detroit man arrested near Fairview

    A Detroit man was arrested Wednesday after an undercover drug buy near Fairview High School, the Boyd County Sheriff's Department reported.

    July 23, 2014

  • 0724putnamwebshot.JPG Laying the foundation Workers are finishing the foundation for the locker room on the home side of Putnam Stadium on Tuesday. The Ashland Tomcats open the football season on Aug. 22 against Newport Catholic.

    July 23, 2014

  • Construction at Kentucky football stadium to go on

    The $110 million construction project at the University of Kentucky’s Commonwealth Stadium will continue through the upcoming football season with the goal of finishing renovations before the 2015 kickoff.

    July 23, 2014