Fiscal court approves bridge dedication, road repaving

Amelia Holliday — Staff Reporter

October 23, 2013

HAZARD—Another Perry County native will be honored at the end of the year with a bridge dedication after the Perry County Fiscal Court approved a resolution at its monthly meeting last week.

Gloria Porter presented the court with the resolution to name the bridge across from the old M.C. Napier High School that connects Combs Road and Highway 476 after longtime Perry Countian Dewey Miracle.

“When I was here last time, one of you stated that it would be so nice if some of these World War II veterans could actually see and feel the honor that’s bestowed upon them by these bridge namings,” Porter addressed the court.” I’m here today to ask for a bridge to be named after one that’s still living.”

Porter said that Miracle served in the Civilian Concentration Corps after graduating high school, helping to build bridges and roads in the state. After enlisting in the Army, he was stationed in the Pacific Theatre for the duration of World War II.

“(You) can’t get him to say much about that; people were killed standing right next to him so he felt really lucky to be alive,” Porter said. “You can tell that he’s really proud of what he and his generation did.”

Miracle came to Perry County in 1949 and was able to open a barbershop with the help of the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944, or the G.I. Bill, Porter said.

“If any of you recognize his name that’s probably why you recognize it; Dewey’s Barbershop was an institution in Hazard for decades,” she added.

Judge-Executive Denny Ray Noble said Miracle had been his barber for years and remembered him well.

“He’s a one-of-a-kind person, Dewey is,” he said.

Porter added that Miracle was even the first barber at the veterans’ center.

“He’s probably not going to go down in any history book anywhere for some major deed, but everybody lives a good life quietly every day and I’d like you to recognize him,” she said.

The court unanimously approved the resolution, and Noble explained that since the county is grouping all of the bridge namings into one resolution so that it does not have to foot the bill, it will take until next year for the bridge to actually be named.

In other business, the court approved a memorandum of agreement between the court and the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Department of Highways in the amount of $148,668.

“Each year, from the gas tax collected, the state tries to work with the county to try to return some of that gas tax money to the counties in the form of research and patching black top. Last year, our amount from the state was over a quarter of a million dollars, this year it’s been reduced to $148,668,” John Epperson, who presented the memorandum to the court, explained.

He added that the county will create a list of roads that need work that can be done for the amount awarded by the state; after the work is done the state reimburses the county that amount. The roads that have been chosen this year to either be repaved or patched are: Glomawr Stormking Road, Raccoon Creek Road, Camelot Hill Drive, Chavies Dunraven Road, Spencer Fork, Wolf Branch Road, Pearl Lane, Browns Fork Road, Hurricane Branch Road, and Douglas Drive.

The court tabled the consideration of a resolution for the Troublesome Creek Environmental Authority to transfer ownership and control of the Ball Creek waste water treatment plant to the Knott County Water and Sewer District. Noble said he wanted to wait until County Attorney John Carl Shackelford could draw up an agreement with Knott County in order to ensure that those Perry County citizens being served by the treatment plant at Ball Creek could not be forced to pay more once the transfer is complete simply due to the fact that they live in another county.