PDS is moving!

Posted on August 20, 2019
PDS will be relocating soon. To accommodate the move, we will be adjusting our services temporarily according to the following schedule.

Thursday, September 12th - Open at current location for permits and inspections only.
Friday, September 13th - Closed for business at 2332 Royal Drive.

New Address: 1840 Simon Kenton Way, Covington
Monday, September 16th - Open for permits and inspections only.

Tuesday, September 17th - Return to full operations; 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Click the map below for a larger view

From I-71/75 N
• Take the 12th Street/MLK exit
• At the intersection, cross MLK onto Simon Kenton Way
• Entrance to new county building is on the right

From I-71/75 S
• Take the 12th Street/MLK exit
• At MLK, turn left and go under the expressway
• Turn left onto Simon Kenton Way
• Entrance to new county building is on the right

Thank you for your patience, and we’ll see you at our new office building!



Public Open House for southern Kenton County

Posted on July 15, 2019
The Kenton County Fiscal Court is holding a public open house on July 22, 2019 to display findings of a research effort for the future of southern Kenton County. If you live, work, play, or learn in southern Kenton County, please plan to attend the meeting anytime between 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. on July 22, 2019 at Piner Baptist Church (15044 Madison Pike, Morning View, KY 41063).

Over the last several months, the Fiscal Court has been working with Planning and Development Services of Kenton County (PDS) staff to conduct in-depth research for the south Kenton area. The effort has reviewed everything from natural features to the location of infrastructure to gain as clear a picture as possible before moving from research to the planning phase. Now, the county would like to get your input on the research to date and any additional research needs before moving to the next phase of the project.

To best display the research, a public open house will be held to provide participants an opportunity to learn about topics in-depth, ask questions of staff, and provide input for official consideration. As the meeting is an open house, people can come any time that is convenient between 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.

This meeting is part of an ongoing project seeking to update the Direction 2030 comprehensive plan for all communities in Kenton County. This specific meeting will present research on existing conditions, describe trends that could impact southern Kenton County, and establish a foundation for updating the plan for the unincorporated area in the next phase of the project. The associated research builds upon public involvement efforts that started in 2011, continued via surveys that were distributed to all south Kenton County addresses in 2014 and 2016, and is ongoing in the form of the South Kenton Citizens Group.

Direction 2030: Your Voice, Your Choice is a strong public-engagement process intended to prepare Kenton County for the challenges and possibilities of the future. For more information, visit the project website at www.direction2030.org.

Public encouraged to participate in updating award-winning plan

Posted on July 09, 2019
Kenton County Planning Commission (KCPC) members seek your input to make sure proposed changes to its award-winning Direction 2030 comprehensive plan reflect the desires of the community. If you live, work, play, or learn in Kenton County, please visit Direction2030.org/draft-changes by July 22 to provide your thoughts.

It has been five short years since the KCPC adopted Kenton County’s comprehensive plan. State law requires that comprehensive plans across the commonwealth be reviewed and revised as necessary every five years.

“When we created Direction 2030, we set out to make a new kind of plan that was more flexible and responsive to changes in our fast-paced world,” explained Jeff Bethell, chair of KCPC’s Implementation Committee. “We have already worked with the public and made some amendments to the plan based on specific topics. Now, we want to step back and take a more thorough look at the overall recommendations and get people’s input as we move towards that magic five-year anniversary mark.”

KCPC is requesting public review and input on draft changes that have been identified by its staff and experts ranging from utilities to transportation officials to the development community. The review and comment period will take place over the next two weeks and will allow interested persons to review the draft text and map changes, and then provide comments directly on the website.

“Conducting an online review and input session is a first in our comprehensive planning efforts,” said James Fausz, AICP, Long Range Planning Manager for Planning and Development Services of Kenton County (PDS), the planning commission’s staff.

“Seeing as the plan exists only online, we felt an online review was most appropriate for the proposed changes. The format gives people a chance to get into the plan’s details and see how everything will function if adopted by KCPC.”

After the review period closes, PDS staff will compile comments and provide them to the KCPC’s Implementation Committee. That group will decide on any appropriate changes before finalizing and submitting the final draft to the full Commission for official consideration.

The plan is scheduled for a public hearing before the full KCPC on September 5, 2019 starting at 6:15 p.m. Details on the final draft changes and location for the meeting are anticipated to be available in August.

Direction 2030: Your Voice, Your Choice is a strong public-engagement process intended to prepare Kenton County for the challenges and possibilities of the future. For more information, visit the project website at Direction2030.org.

Staff Members Win Toastmasters Contest

Posted on February 22, 2019
Christy Powell and Trisha BrushPDS staff members Trisha Brush and Christy Powell won their respective speech contests on a recent Saturday and will be advancing to the next level in Lexington in March. Both are members of the Northern Kentucky Toastmasters club that meets at PDS at noon on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month. This club is part of Toastmasters International.

According the Toastmasters International, more than 30,000 Toastmasters compete in one or more contests each year. Competition begins with club contests and winners continue competing through the area, division, district and all new region quarterfinal levels. Region quarterfinal winners advance to the International competition, where they will compete in the semifinals for a chance to take part in the World Championship of Public Speaking®.

Powell competed in the Table Topics contest. This contest challenges participants to answer a question with an impromptu speech of 1 to 2 minutes. All contestants answer the same question and don’t get the hear the previous contestants answers. Powell was excited to draw the first position in the contest so that she was able to hear the other contestants answers.

Brush won the International Speech Contest. In the International Speech Contest, contestants have to create and give an original 5 to 7 minute speech on any subject they choose. Unlike the Table Topics contest, contestants are able to watch all other speeches in the contest. Brush gave a speech about gratitude.

If Powell wins the Table Topics contest in March, there is one additional level in April with contestants from Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia. The International Speech contest that Brush is competing in continues to the World Championship of Public Speaking in Denver this August.

Toastmasters International is a non-profit educational organization that teaches public speaking and leadership skills through a worldwide network of clubs. Headquartered in Englewood, Colorado, the organization's membership exceeds 357,000 in more than 16,600 clubs in 143 countries. Since 1924, Toastmasters International has helped people from diverse backgrounds become more confident speakers, communicators, and leaders.

Kenton comprehensive plan updated on new schedule

Posted on August 24, 2018

The Kenton County Planning Commission (KCPC) has updated the county’s award-winning comprehensive plan, Direction 2030: Your Voice. Your Choice. after considerable work by the commission’s staff. State law requires that comprehensive plans be reviewed and updated by local planning commissions every five years. The KCPC adopted Direction 2030 in 2014.

Direction 2030 was originally designed to take Kenton County’s planning program in a new direction,” said James Fausz, AICP, Long-Range Planning Manager for PDS of Kenton County. PDS provides professional staff for the Kenton County Planning Commission.

“This latest round of updates continues with the plan’s new path. While the plan’s online-only format was a definite paradigm shift, reviewing and amending the plan more frequently than every five years  allows us to be more responsive to our communities’ needs. These recent amendments are a perfect example of this new direction.”

A number of Kenton County’s elected officials approached PDS staff of late, wanting to update their respective future land use maps. These maps provide direction to elected leaders and the planning commission when they’re faced with rezoning requests.

According to Fausz, the new approach of updating the plan when necessary (but no less frequently than every five years) “allowed us to respond to the cities’ needs in a more timely manner, putting them in the best position to be proactive for the future.”

The recent amendments to Direction 2030:

·        updated the Recommended Land Use map for the Cities of Bromley, Edgewood, Elsmere, Erlanger, Fort Mitchell, Independence, Ludlow, and Ryland Heights;

·        updated several elements to insert recommendations and maps from Kenton Connects, the county’s new bicycle/pedestrian plan;  

·        updated the interactive land use map to reflect the state’s more detailed proposed alignment for KY 536 from Staffordsburg Road to KY 177 and remove a proposed arterial connecting KY 16 and KY 177; and,

·        updated and amended the description for Mixed Use; and, updated the Community Service Areas for Cox Road, KY 16, KY 536, and KY 1303.

Direction 2030 may be found online. Questions should be directed to PDS at 859.331.8980.

 


New building codes an option now; mandatory January 1st

Posted on August 23, 2018

Following action by the Legislative Research Commission, the 2018 edition of the Kentucky Building Code and Kentucky Residential Code are now options for builders pursuing construction across the Commonwealth. Both codes will be mandatory statewide on January 1st.

“The Department of Housing, Buildings, and Construction along with building inspectors and trades people from across the state have worked towards this new edition for quite a few years,” said Brian Sims, CBO, Chief Building Official for PDS of Kenton County. PDS provides building code review and inspection services for 18 of Kenton County’s 20 local governments.

“Schools will benefit from two of the most noticeable changes in the 2018 codes,” according to Sims. “Storm shelters adequate to protect a building’s student body and staff will be required in new school facilities. They’ll also be required to include public address systems capable of overriding fire alarms so that directions may be heard over the alarm.”

The 2018 Kentucky Building Code and 2018 Kentucky Residential Code are based on the 2015 International Building Code and International Residential Code, both with some Kentucky-specific amendments. The International Codes Council, a member-focused association with over 64,000 members worldwide, produces both codes. The Kentucky-specific amendments are available from the following links from the Department of Housing, Buildings, and Construction.

2018 Kentucky Building Code

       2018 Kentucky Residential Code

Additional information on the new codes is available from the department’s website.

Questions about implementation of the new codes in Kenton County should be emailed to bsims@pdskc.org or directed to him at 859.331.8980.



Construction ends FY18 on a high note

Posted on July 10, 2018
Several key categories from Kenton County’s development scene showed strong numbers for June, the end of Fiscal Year 2018. PDS’ monthly analytics showed the highest numbers of the past 12 months for four key activities: plans reviewed; permits issued; inspections performed; and, linear feet of new concrete sidewalk inspected.

“While these numbers are annual highs, they didn’t come as a complete surprise,” said Dennis Gordon, FAICP, Executive Director. “We’ve watched these activity levels grow throughout the fiscal year. June’s numbers approximate what we were seeing back in 2008 before the market crashed.”

According to ‘PDS by the Numbers’ for June, staff: reviewed 170 sets of construction plans; issued 324 permits; performed 653 inspections; and, inspected 2,596 linear feet of new concrete sidewalk. ‘PDS by the Numbers’ keeps track of close to 100 activities pursued by staff on a monthly basis. Most are posted online for agency accountability and transparency.

Other metrics included in the monthly post are: plan review turn around time; project values (provided by the applicant); subdivision plats submitted; residential lots created; number of active subdivisions in the County; code enforcement cases opened/closed; planning commission and board of adjustment cases processed; number of walk-in/phone-in customers helped; and, social media communications sent out alone with the number of responses.


Kenton Connects scheduled for action

Posted on July 10, 2018

The Kenton County Planning Commission will act next month on a bicycle and pedestrian plan for Kenton County. The year-long effort to craft the plan concluded recently with an open-house forum at Dixie Heights High School. If approved by the Planning Commission, the new plan titled Kenton Connects will be incorporated into Direction 2030, the Kenton County comprehensive plan to guide future mobility decisions across the community.

Kenton Connects replaces the county’s two stand-alone plans. The Kenton County Bicycle Plan was adopted by the Kenton County Planning Commission in June 1999. And, the Kenton County Pedestrian Plan was adopted by the Planning Commission in June 2001.

For more information on Kenton Connects, logon to the plan’s website, email cschneider@pdskc.org, or call him at 859.331.8980.


Governor signs PDS-sponsored bill

Posted on May 14, 2018
Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin signed House Bill 138 April 10th enacting provisions approved earlier by the General Assembly. The bill, proposed by PDS of Kenton County and sponsored by Rep. Adam Koenig of Erlanger, authorizes local communities to band together to create joint boards of adjustment that will be made up of an appointee from each jurisdiction. The new law takes effect July 1.

“The catalyst for this bill came from our local officials,” said Dennis Gordon, FAICP, executive director at PDS. “Many of our local officials are finding it more and more difficult to justify the cost of standalone boards that might meet a couple times a year. They’re also finding fewer and fewer people who are willing to give up time with family to sit on a public board.”

Collaborative boards with neighboring communities solve both problems. PDS suggested a similar bill several years ago involving code enforcement boards. There were 14 code enforcement boards in Kenton County at the time. Today there are four, one being a joint board serving Kenton County and 13 cities.

“I believe every community has found this to be a win-win collaboration,” stated Gordon. “The increased workload of a joint board necessitates monthly meetings which in turn facilitates members becoming more familiar with their responsibilities. Better-informed members tend to make more legally-defensible decisions which results in lower liability and costs for municipal budgets.”

Gordon reports that Kenton County has 13 boards of adjustment currently. He concludes with the hope that that number will dwindle as mayors become more comfortable with the concept and the ability to appoint their own members and save dollars.



Kenton Connects ready for review

Posted on May 14, 2018
The Kenton Connects Advisory Committee invites Kenton County residents to a Public Open House on May 16 from 6 – 7:30 p.m. The forum will be held in the Dixie Heights High School cafeteria (3010 Dixie Highway).

Residents may come and go at their leisure.

“Public input and feedback is a critical part of creating successful bicycle and pedestrian policies for our communities,” explained Chris Schneider, AICP, Principal Planner for PDS and project manager for the study. “We’re pleased with the input that led to the draft and hope a large turnout will provide feedback from residents.”

The Kenton Connects study began last summer with the goal of updating the county’s most recent bicycle plan (1999) and pedestrian plan (2001) and encouraging these modes of transportation in Kenton County. The study’s Advisory Committee is comprised of residents, business owners, elected officials, and professionals to provide staff oversight and guidance to the study.

A public survey conducted in October 2017 provided initial direction for the study and the resulting plan was built on that input. The study focuses on bicycle and pedestrian safety, usage, infrastructure, and education. The resulting plan is the months-long efforts by the Advisory Committee and PDS staff.

The Public Open House will give attendees an understanding of the work and research that went into the study and the draft recommendations, and an opportunity to provide feedback.

“We’ve learned a great deal from the community and believe the draft plan presents an accurate vision for bicycle and pedestrian issues,” said Jason Reser, Advisory Committee member. “This Open House is a great opportunity to learn more about the Kenton Connects study and to contribute to making cycling and walking better in Kenton County.”

Committee members will review feedback and begin finalizing the plan following the Open House.

While the plan might be nearing completion, there is still much work to do before the final approval process. Visit www.KentonConnects.org or email Chris Schneider at PDS or call him at 859.331.8980 for more information on ways you can play a role.

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