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Come celebrate your neighbors during the City’s downtown Community Block Party April 22.

Come join the fun at SoKY Marketplace and Hot Rods Alley for the City’s downtown block party April 22.

The pandemic put the brakes on this party for a couple of years but it’s back and better than ever.

This year’s theme, The Neighbors – Mightiest Heroes of Bowling Green, celebrates all those people who helped each other in the immediate aftermath of the December tornadoes and the city’s many unsung heroes who keep everything running.

The party begins at 3 p.m., Friday, April 22 at the SoKY Marketplace pavilion and Hot Rods Alley and ends at 7 p.m. The Hot Rods will play that night with first pitch starting at 6:30 p.m.

City departments such as public works, police, and fire will show off some of their vehicles and there will be plenty of food available from local food trucks.

Once you leave the block party, you can head over for more family fun to the Bowling Green Stadium for the Hot Rods game with fireworks to follow.

 

 

How BG Government Works

Bowling Green is a City Manager form of government as constituted under Kentucky Revised Statute 83A.150 and was established as such in 1969.

All of the powers of the executive and legislative branches are vested in the Board of Commissioners (all judicial functions are under the jurisdiction of state government). The Board of Commissioners is made up of four Commissioners who serve two-year terms and a Mayor who serves a four-year term. The Board of Commissioners make public policy and focus the direction for the City of Bowling Green.

The Mayor has the statutory responsibility to preside at Board meetings, recommend appointments to designated boards, and is the signatory of authorized documents on behalf of the City.

The Board of Commissioners also appoints a City Manager as the chief administrative officer. The City Manager administers the policies, procedures and directives established by the Board of Commissioners. Oversight and coordination of the daily operations of the City’s nine departments and their divisions is the overall responsibility of this position.

Board of Commissioners meetings occur on the first and third Tuesday of each month at 4:30 p.m. at City Hall (located at 1001 College Street). Proposals for action are placed on the agenda by the City Manager or members of the Board. At the meetings, members of the Board discuss and deliberate items on the agenda, then approve, modify, or reject the proposals by a majority vote. The City Manager then carries out the decisions of the Board.

Meetings are open to the public. They are broadcast live on the local government cable access Channel 4 and streamed live on the internet through the City website.

 

Sinkholes!

Have you ever heard people talk about the “Karst” topography of Bowling Green? Have you heard anyone describe how we use our cave systems to move water rain water?

Bowling Green and the majority of Warren County are located in an area with the highest potential for Karst activity. A karst area is defined as being an irregular limestone region with sinkholes, underground streams, and caverns, and because of this our area has very few surface streams and rivers because most of our water is underground. Sinkholes are not new in this area they are simply a function and by product of the Karst area we live in.

The most common type of sinkhole in this area is caused by sub-surface water eroding soil thru cracks in the limestone leaving voids just below the surface that eventually collapse that we call sinkholes. Heavy Rains, Construction, various land use changes and concentrated surface runoff may increase the occurrence of sinkholes in specific areas and one of the reasons sinkholes may appear more often in newly constructed areas.

On the surface sinkholes tend to appear rather suddenly and without provocation, but in general and in reality they have been forming slowly over time and finally appear when the surface can no longer support its own weight. Small areas can be examined with ground penetrating radar looking for anomalies in high risk areas but such methods are slow, laborious and expensive.

The City of Bowling Green provides guidance to builders and developers that govern how they manage areas of concentrated runoff that hope to avoid creating karst collapses.  Further we provide guidance on how to repair sinkholes properly so that they do not reoccur.  Please visit www.bgky.org  or our partners at underbgky.org for more information

 

 

 

As many folks in Bowling Green know (and for those who don’t), since the City’s first year of Select Neighborhood Action Program (SNAP) grant cycle in 1999, we have been careful to monitor the progress of the grants along with their effectiveness for neighborhood groups.  This has meant adjusting the budget and/or program guidelines from time to time to reflect the timely needs of the City’s own budgetary pressures, along with the evolving needs of neighborhood groups themselves.  Last year, for the first time ever, we suspended SNAP and replaced it with a Flexible Neighborhood Grant program.  We’re continuing with this FLEXIBLE program again this year.

As the name implies, this replacement program is meant to offer flexibility to organizations to be able to address timely needs and opportunities reflective of the times we find ourselves in today.  The program guidelines and application are greatly streamlined, and each application will be evaluated on its own merit during this time frame. Virtually any project that would have been eligible under SNAP remains eligible under this replacement program.

A key value of the Flexible Neighborhood Grant program is the idea of pilot projects and/or temporary projects.  In acknowledging the importance of short term and/or temporary projects, we are promoting some of the “testing” ideas that may be more impactful now than ever, as promoted by such leading organizations as the following:

None of us know how COVID-19 will continue to influence our public life into next fiscal year, but we am certain that a flexible approach to supporting our neighbors will be necessary.  The replacement guidelines and an online application process can be found on our website here:  https://www.bgky.org/neighborhoods/flexible-neighborhood-grant.  Anyone awarded a Flexible Neighborhood Grant will sign a grant agreement with conditions specific to their particular request. Applications are open now with no current deadline.  Reviews of applications will occur on a rolling basis, but grant funds will not be available to be approved until later in July.

If you have additional questions you can reach out to Karen Foley at karen.foley@bgky.org.

 

 

 

Stormwater

Spring and summer rains are essential to our City, but they can also bring issues in the form of flooding and water pollution. The City of Bowling Green is always working to improve our stormwater program in order to help prevent future flooding and water quality issues.

Stormwater is water that originates during rain events and does not soak into the ground but becomes surface runoff, which either flows directly into surface waterways (rivers and streams), or is channeled into storm sewers, which eventually discharge to surface waters.  These waters can pick up debris, chemicals, dirt and other pollutants. If heavy rains occur, flooding can also develop.

All cities deal with stormwater pollutants and flooding, but Bowling Green is unique. Bowling Green and Warren County are located in a karst region that is made up of caves, sinkholes, springs, and underground streams. There are very few surface streams and rivers. While most cities use streams and storm sewer systems for handling urban stormwater, Bowling Green uses a series of caves to handle water runoff.  A major concern with alternative methods of handling stormwater is water quality. Bowling Green faces unique challenges with respect to stormwater management.

Many of the challenges that are created by our unique typography are handled in large part by our Public Works Department.  The City of Bowling Green focuses on multiple stormwater projects every year and budgets accordingly. Each year BG focuses on various stormwater issues that can range from large scale retention basin projects to smaller neighborhood concerns.

In addition to the City working to fix the large scale stormwater problems, there are MANY things that the average citizen can do to help our water quality.  First, you can use household cleaners that are labeled non-toxic (that may be something to do anyway), pick up animal waste from your back yard (hey – we know it’s not pleasant but it’s better than drinking it), never blow sweep, or rake leaves/grass clippings into storm drains or sinkholes, and properly maintain your car to reduce leakage of oil and other fluids.  These are just a few hints and tips – for a full list, you can visit https://www.bgky.org//stormwater.

The City of Bowling Green Premier Grounds at Preston Miller are open for play! These four soccer fields are located at Preston Miller Park at 2303 Tomblinson Way. All four fields are 330’ x 180’ with Bermuda grass and will have multiple uses including free play, practices and tournaments.

     

These fields include a parking lot with approximately 280 spaces, sidewalks, lights, shelter and bleachers.

     

Preston Miller Park is 55 acres and home to the Russell Sims Aquatic Center. This park also includes a one mile walking/running trail, 18-hole disc golf course, a handicap accessible playground filled with many activities for children of different ages, and a basketball court. Preston Miller Park also has three sand volleyball courts where you kind find league teams playing in the warmer seasons. Along with the many facilities listed, Preston Miller Park also has a picnic shelter.

     

As warmer weather approaches and the days are longer we look forward to seeing residents of Bowling Green enjoying these great fields.

Don’t forget, Preston Miller Park also has a free outdoor gym for all to use!

May 4th, 2021 is International Firefighters day. Firefighters dedicate their lives to the protection of life and property. Sometimes that dedication is in the form of countless hours volunteered over many years, in others it is many selfless years working in the industry. In all cases it risks the ultimate sacrifice of a firefighter’s life.

International Firefighters’ Day (IFFD) is a time where the world’s community can recognize and honor the sacrifices that firefighters make to ensure that their communities and environment are as safe as possible. It is also a day in which current and past firefighters can be thanked for their contributions.

The Bowling Green Fire Department is a fully paid department that achieved international accreditation in 2008 and reaccreditation in 2014 and 2018 through the Commission on Fire Accreditation International, also known as the Center for Public Safety Excellence. This accreditation gives us a rare achievement within the fire service in that only 3 fire departments in Kentucky and only 288 fire departments internationally have this distinction.

BGFD has a total of 141 employees working out of 6 stations and 1 administrative office building. The 7th station is currently under construction and will open in 2021. The department has the following divisions: administration, suppression, prevention/inspection and training.

BGFD Mission Statement

Our mission is to protect lives, property, and environment by providing a high level of professional fire and rescue services to the Bowling Green Community.

Supporting Values:

  • Service to the community – this is our purpose.
  • Professional Competence – we will train for improvement, proficiency and effectiveness on the job.
  • Teamwork – teamwork is essential to the effective delivery of our service. Each member’s contribution is important.
  • Our people are our most important resource. Develop this resource.
  • Integrity – we will treat our customers and co-workers with honesty and respect at all times.
  • Accountability – my competence, my attitude, my actions reflect on every member of the workforce.

Our responsibilities include a broad Scope of Services including:

  • Fire Prevention/Code Enforcement/Plan review
  • Fire Safety Education
  • Fire Suppression-Incident Mitigation-Loss Control
  • Emergency Medical Response
  • Fire Cause Investigation/Arson Prosecution
  • Hazardous Material Incident Mitigation
  • Auto Accident Extrication/Heavy Rescue
  • Industrial Accident Rescue/Extrication
  • Confined Space Rescue
  • Water Rescue
  • High Angle Rescue
  • Trench Rescue

International Firefighters’ Day is observed each year on 4th May. On this date you are invited to remember the past firefighters who have died while serving our community or dedicated their lives to protecting the safety of us all. At the same time, we can show our support and appreciation to the firefighters worldwide who continue to protect us so well throughout the year.

BGFD is currently hiring. If you are interested in joining this winning team, please visit www.bgky.org/hr/jobs.