Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

November 30, 2012

Olive Hill meeting tight-lipped

Mike James
The Independent

OLIVE HILL — An incoming council member on Thursday called for the immediate resignation of Olive Hill Mayor Danny Sparks, who was arrested the day before on drug trafficking charges.

“He owes us his resignation,” said Glen Meade, saying Sparks had broken the city’s trust in him.

Meade spoke after a special meeting of the council, which did not deviate from its one-item agenda and adjourned within five minutes. Council members were tight-lipped after the meeting and refused to discuss the mayor, who did not attend.

Meade, who was elected this month but has not yet taken office, said Sparks should resign immediately and not wait for his case to be concluded.

Whether Sparks will resign, or has resigned, is unclear. According to previous news reports he had submitted a letter of resignation following his arrest. Council member Linda Lowe said Sparks had written the letter but had not submitted it to the council.

Neither Lowe nor the other council members would comment on Sparks’ arrest or his future with the city. They said they have no information beyond what they’d read in news reports.

Council members would not say whether or when they plan to schedule another meeting to discuss Sparks.

Sparks was arrested Wednesday by drug detectives after a weeks-long investigation. He was charged with marijuana trafficking within 1,000 feet of a school, a felony, after having been detained near Olive Hill Elementary.

The Grayson Journal-Times obtained a copy of his resignation letter, in which he referred to “a very bad mistake” and said “What happen(ed) tonight is something I have never done before & deeply regret.”

The Journal-Times also reports that unnamed sources say Sparks has withdrawn his resignation.

A call to Sparks’ cell phone went directly to voice mail Thursday evening.

Kentucky law requires that for Sparks to resign the council will have to receive and accept his written notice.

If he does resign, the council has 30 days to appoint a new mayor, and if it fails to do so, the governor will make the appointment.

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

(606) 326-2652.