Lexington City Council


Fayette County’s historic courthouse continues to evolve. From serving justice to a museum to hosting retail shops the courthouse has served many purposes over many years.  The last judicial use came in 2002 while full retail offerings didn’t come until 2018.


A&W Restaurants Incorporated is expected to be the first company locating in Lexington’s new industrial park near Interstate 75.  The city has 50 acres shovel ready in UK Coldstream Research Campus. 

A&W will be relocating their global headquarters and moving some 35 jobs to the new site.  Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton is optimistic this is only the start of business growth at the industrial site. “I don’t think we would be in this business doing this if we weren’t," she said.

Stu Johnson

A Lexington council committee is endorsing existing standard operating procedures for the cleaning up of homeless camps on public property.  A representative from Louisville appeared before the General Government and Social Services Committee Tuesday to explain that city’s 21-day notice policy. 


The Lexington city council is moving forward with work to complete the Newtown Pike Extension Project.  The last leg runs from Oliver Lewis Way to Scott Street off of Limestone. 


Lexington’s Planning and Public Safety Committee has adopted a regional land use resolution.  The effort, spearheaded by Bluegrass Tomorrow, included 140 representatives from 18 central Kentucky counties. 

Council Members Worried About Budget Constraints

Jul 3, 2019
Stu Johnson

Some Lexington city council members are expressing frustrations over funding constraints in the newly enacted budget. 

Council Member Fred Brown said future improvements in city parks and repaving priorities are laid out in structured plans.  But, the veteran councilman said mandates are hard to keep without sufficient dollars. “We’ve got a plan out there that requires maintenance money and capital money and we are not funding that plan.  We all do well and good and set up these plans.  But, if we don’t fund these plans, we’re falling short,” said Brown.

E-Scooters Likely To Be In Lexington This Summer

Jun 23, 2019

The Lexington city council has approved a shared mobility vehicle ordinance.  The council vote means electric scooters could be in selected locations around the downtown and the University of Kentucky by August.

Stu Johnson

A recycling consulting firm has been hired to assist Lexington officials in establishing new, long-term recycling strategies.  That review will include investigating a move for a private entity to operate the city’s recycling center. 

A portion of Weku's Stu Johnson's interview with Tyler Scott:

Lexington Council To Review Home Vacation Rentals

Jun 17, 2019

Lexington’s city council is expected to review short- term house rental programs in the coming months. The issue has been placed in the council’s Planning and Public Safety Committee.

Fifth District Councilman Bill Farmer believes issues related to programs like Airbnb, Vacation Rental By Owner and HomeAway need more scrutiny.  

The veteran council member said he’s getting comments from citizens about increased activity in residential neighborhoods.


A special state prosecutor has been named to look into possible campaign finance violations involving an executive at a Lexington development company.  

CRM Executive Timothy Wayne Wellman was indicted last week on federal charges, accused of lying to federal investigators and instructing contributors to lie about contributions to Lexington council members.  

Attorney General spokesperson Crystal Staley said a letter went out to Jefferson County Commonwealth’s Attorney Thomas Wine in mid-March to look at Wellman's actions.


Lexington council members are being asked to adopt sign ordinance amendments and modify certain zone change procedures.  Citizens will be able to weigh in on both subjects at separate public hearings on June 27th. 

Lexington Herald-Leader

The attorney representing a Lexington real estate company owner indicted over a proposal to relocate city hall in the local newspaper’s building said his client looks forward to defending himself in court.


The Lexington Herald-Leader reports an owner of a real estate company faces multiple federal charges related to a proposal to move city hall to the Herald Leader’s downtown building. The allegations are that straw contributors were used to make contributions to council members.  The case also involves accusations of lying to federal investigators.

bird rideshare electric scooters

Lexington city leaders continue to wrestle with regulations for the anticipated onset of electric scooters. Proponents say putting a licensing framework in place will help to reduce problems seen in larger cities.

Several amendments to the ‘draft shared mobility vehicles ordinance’ gained council approval.  One requires e-scooter companies to retrieve inoperable two-wheelers in public right of ways within two hours. 

City Pedestrian and Cycling Coordinator Scott Thompson expects firms to respond to complaints. “They hire out people to rebalance and retrieve the vehicles and they want to get those back and they do not want to sour the community on those and that’s part of the reason we’re making certain requirements,” said Thompson.

Lexington Council Irons Out Budget Modifications

May 29, 2019

Lexington council members have worked their way through a number of budget decisions for the 2019 fiscal year which begins in July. Final approval will come over the next couple of weeks.


Lexington’s children’s museum, the Explorium, is drawing close to three decades of providing hands-on,  thought-provoking exhibits for young visitors.  But sustainable funding has been a challenge, even with city support.  Tight financial times have caused council members to reduce funding to the Explorium by $75,000. 

Museum Director Lee Ellen Martin said it’s a seasonal attraction with often a peak of activity in July but a lull in the fall.


Lexington council members covered a variety of traffic related issues during a committee meeting Tuesday. One item talked about often involves motorists running through red lights. 


Lexington council members are working on developing an ordinance to pave the way for electronic scooters along with pedal assisted bikes this summer.  Members of the Planning Committee were briefed on the Shared Mobility Vehicles proposal Tuesday.

Several members expressed interest in making modifications.  That included Seventh District Council Member Preston Worley. “I was recently in Washington D.C.  You got people on scooters going 25 miles an hour, flying down the sidewalk in the national mall.  We want to make sure that’s not how you do it,” said Worley.

Stu Johnson

The Lexington council has given preliminary approval to a $27 million budget for the city’s mass transit system.  Lextran has been offering bus rides through this type of service since 1973.

Lexington Council Expected To Increase Sewer Fees

May 1, 2019

Lexington city leaders are expected to pass sanitary sewer fee increases in the next few weeks to support continued work to revamp the city’s sewer system.  Council votes are anticipated to raise the fee by 5% this July and the same amount next July.

Division of Water Quality Director Charlie Martin said much of the work from now on will focus on pipeline improvements.


Lexington’s VA Hospital may someday be the site of a Fisher House facility.  Fisher House is the name given to a home away from home for family members of military veterans receiving hospital care.  It carries the name of Zachary Fisher who was a New York born philanthropist and businessman. 

Lexington To Further Evaluate Recycling

Apr 29, 2019

The future of city-coordinated recycling in Lexington remains a topic of discussion .  The conversation includes how to cope with mechanical snags at the city’s sorting facility.

Members of a Lexington council committee  recently engaged in a wide open discussion about recycling.  That discussion included everything from changing markets for recyclables and how to cover the cost of door to door collection and sorting. 

Lexington Traffic Signal Boxes Wrapped Up With Art

Apr 24, 2019
Stu Johnson

More public art could be coming to a street corner near you in Lexington.  A city council committee got updated Tuesday on artistic vinyl wraps around traffic signal boxes.  Environmental Quality and Public Works Program Manager Angela Poe says there are about 400 such boxes around Lexington. 

Stu Johnson

Lexington’s mass transit system will join other municipal bus services across the country Thursday for the first “Get on Board Day.”  Lextran Assistant General Manager Jill Barnett says frequent riders and first-timers are both urged to try a bus ride. 

Barnett says the federal authorization bill for mass transit expires in 2020. “Any time we can demonstrate to the nation and to our legislators the value and importance of public transit, both economically and environmentally, we want to do that,” said Barnett.

Stu Johnson

A Lexington council committee is exploring how best to treat homeless camps.  Tuesday’s meeting included suggestions from the homeless community.

Lexington Mayor Proposes Continuation Budget

Apr 9, 2019
Stu Johnson

Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton is recommending ‘a continuation budget’ that she says resets the city’s spending.  Gorton delivered her suggestions for the $379 million budget to council Tuesday afternoon.

The first-term mayor says private sector job and salary growth have slowed and so funds coming into the city are lower than expected.  Gorton says fixed costs for utilities, pensions, personnel, and debt service have increased.   Still, citizens should not expect to be asked to dig deeper into their pockets.


City Councilman Richard Moloney shared his concerns about Lexington’s budget this week as the council got its monthly update from city revenue officials.  

During that report, Moloney said city funding for big community projects is partly responsible for a tight budget. “We spent more money than we should have.  For instance, we’ve done a couple, three projects that we usually take….been here 30 years, that I saw go through once every ten years or maybe once every 15.  But we did all three within three years.”


University of Kentucky officials detailed Tuesday afternoon an updated student code of conduct policies to Lexington council members.  The university adopted a new code of conduct in June of 2016. 

Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government

Lexington city leaders are moving forward with working with a consultant to study re-timing certain traffic signals on weekends. 

The study involves more than 40 traffic lights in the Hamburg and Nicholasville road areas.  Council Member Jennifer Mossotti asked Acting Environmental Quality and Public Works Commissioner Charlie Martin about the Reynolds Road light near Fayette Mall. “I mean that whole intersection is just a dead stop now.  Not any better when the holidays are gone,” said Mossotti. 

Lexington Herald-Leader

The Lexington Council has voted to spend up to $90,000 to build a temporary parking lot for Main Street Baptist Church.  The expansion of the downtown convention center is anticipated to wipe out much of the area currently used for church parking. 

Elder Wayne Cornelius says church members are happy the council moved in their favor, but long-term issues remain. “So, after this is done, we have to think about long-term, at times when the park comes back into play.  Then that’s another whole series of negotiations have to go on,” said Cornelius