A4 | Wednesday, May 9, 2012 | The Anderson News
Rent pulling track
to shut up critics
ood weather and large crowds mean last weekend’s truck
and tractor pull will result in a hefty donation for the
Just how hefty that donation will be is unanswerable, and not
ecause receipts from the gate and concessions are still being
And that’s a problem.
The Anderson County Fiscal Court needs to adopt a hardnd-fast policy on using the county park for events of any kind,
ncluding those designed to be fundraisers.
Despite many meetings, anonymous innuendo and downright
alsehoods, the current policy leaves the fiscal court and truck
ull promoter Eddie Carey wide open for those criticisms and
This isn’t a screed against Carey. We’ve said before and still
aintain that Carey’s idea to bring these pulls to Lawrenceburg is
great one if for no other reason than that they draw thousands
f visitors and their wallets to our fair city.
One would think the nearly invisible city/county tourism
uthority — does that still even exist? — could do the same.
We’ve also said it’s wonderful that Carey’s stated intention
rom the time these pulls started was to donate net proceeds from
hem to the fiscal court in an effort to improve the park.
But therein lies the rub. The pope
could make that claim and, without
independent accounting of gate and
Those criticisms, nearly
concession receipts, there would be
all made anonymously
some who question if all the money
via online message
is actually being donated.
Carey has apparently lived up to
boards or by lunchhis word. He has donated thousands
counter prophets not
in cash, and with his own labor
men enough to do so in installed what he says is over $13,000
in perimeter fence around the pullpublic, will not stop as
ing tracks — which he also paid to
long as no system is in
place to shut them up.
Also, it’s Carey who fronts
upwards of $20,000 from his own
pocket to promote the pulls — money
e risks losing if the weather or crowds conspire against him.
For his efforts, Carey gets accused of all sorts of underhanded
actics, including lining his pockets and those of Judge-Executive
John Wayne Conway, who Carey and his family financially supported during the 2010 election. Both strongly denied profiting
from the pulls during last week’s fiscal court meeting.
Those criticisms, nearly all made anonymously via online message boards or by lunch-counter prophets not men enough to do
so in public, will not stop as long as no system is in place to shut
The options, as we see them, are two. First, the fiscal court
could hire workers to collect money at the gate and concessions.
Second and more appropriately, the fiscal court could manage
the pulling track the same way it does other park assets: rent it.
Be it Carey’s truck and tractor pulls or the frequent truck tugs
and lawnmower pulls, the fiscal court could establish a fee to rent
the track, as it does the pavilions or Stratton building.
What the group that rents it does with its net proceeds after
that becomes its business, not the fiscal court’s.
Of course that may be a tough sell to taxpayers, some of which
almost certainly will reject the notion of public property being
used for commercial gain, and rightfully so.
Nevertheless, there is little doubt that until the fiscal court
concocts a way to eliminate at least most of the skepticism, the
rumors, lies and innuendo will continue, and give an otherwise
tremendous event repeated black eyes.
Comment at theandersonnews.com.
Fix these problems, too
e’ve had several calls and comments from readers who
were none too happy with the tractor and truck pulls,
particularly because of the late-night noise and litter.
Screaming engines at 10 p.m. on a Friday night are one thing,
but when they’re howling after midnight, it’s understandable
that some folks are going to object.
We checked, and the city’s 911 dispatch center said it received
three calls Friday night, but none Saturday when the pulls ended
For future pulls, the fiscal court would be wise to request that
they be finished by 11 p.m., or so.
As for litter, we heard from some very unhappy folks who
complained about beer cans and other trash strewn about the
One person was particularly bothered that debris had to be
removed from the walking track Saturday morning for Relay for
Life’s 5K race, and that the youth soccer field near the track was
“littered with beer cans and cigarette butts” Sunday morning.
Beer cans were spotted throughout the park, including in the
middle school parking lot.
Big crowds typically create messes, but additional trash cans in
parking areas would be a good way to start.
As for the beer cans, it’s not surprising that folks hanging
out for several hours of truck and tractor pulling might want
an adult beverage. And given that there are no signs forbidding
them to bring alcohol into the park, expecting visitors from other
communities to know that regulation just doesn’t make sense.
Perhaps the best solution is to enlist a vendor, get a weekend
permit and have beer sales inside the event. That way consumption would be monitored and hopefully contained.
It’s unreasonable to think that event organizers can or should
monitor parking areas outside of their gates, and even more
unreasonable to expect city police officers or deputies to patrol
the areas outside of the event in hopes of catching someone drinking a beer.
It wouldn’t be the first time beer has been served on government property. The city council allowed beer sales a couple of
summers ago during its concerts on the Green, and by our count
everyone lived through that.
So some suds at a tractor and truck pull shouldn’t draw too
many objections, either, as long as it’s done inside the track.
The bottom line is that these truck and tractor pulls are an
overall plus to Anderson County. They bring in revenue for the
park as well as local businesses during a time when revenues are
Rather than attacking them, the fiscal court would do well to
address the problems as they arise and encourage these types of
Comment at theandersonnews.com.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Truck pulls benefit community
To the editor:
n response to the article in
last week’s paper regarding the truck pull event
sponsored by Eddie Carey, as
a Lawrenceburg resident and
a participant of the truck
pull, we voice our support for
We’d be disappointed to
see Lawrenceburg lose this
event to a surrounding county. Folks are losing sight of
what this event does for the
These events draw participants and their families from
around the state. What does
that do for our community?
They eat in our local restaurants, purchase fuel at our
gas stations, stay in our hotel
and visit our stores.
The article stated, “[Magistrate David] Montgomery,
who chairs the fiscal court’s
events committee, said Carey
gave $4,300 to the county
following one year’s pull,
another $3,000 from another
pull and constructed $13,000
in fencing.” That’s extra revenue the community would
miss out on should the event
We also think the truck
pull provides an entertainment source for the youth
of our community, providing
them with something to do
in town rather than traveling
to Frankfort or Lexington.
If you’ve ever been to one
of the pulls, you’d see how
many young people turn out
to support the event.
Mr. Carey does a wonderful job organizing and promoting this event for Lawrenceburg. It’s nice to have a
pulling event in our hometown that we can be proud
of and that helps our local
merchants. We hope our local
government and community
will support the event.
Chuck and Holly Thompson
CASA thanks volunteers
tin Taylor, TJ Taylor, Mike
Fitzpatrick and some of his
Band of Brothers — Seth Carmichael, Chris Fitzpatrick,
Mackenzie Morris, Ethan
Kelly, Matt Sprague and
To the editor:
ASA (Court Appointed
organized a Stop Child
Abuse fund raising event
April 7 by having
CASA volunteers, and
some other very special volunteers, collect money at
various intersections in the
After being specially
trained and sworn in,
CASA volunteers advocate
for abused and neglected
children by collecting and
information from a number of sources and bringing this information to the
Family Court Judge in a
written report. This carefully researched information
focuses on the child’s best
interest which is ensuring
that the child is in a safe-permanent home.
CASA is proud to be a
voice for these children
who are in the court system
through no fault of their
Because CASA receives
no money from federal or
state government, it operates
mostly on money received
from grants, donations and
CASA would like to thank
the following community
volunteers for coming out
early on a cold and windy
Saturday morning to raise
money and awareness for
CASA: Natalie Nichols, Aus-
Leaders should follow
the rules, too
To the editor:
hen some business tenants of
mine were forced
to obtain a conditional use
permit, they pointed out that
one of our county officials,
Jason Denny, doesn’t have
one for his own home-based
Denny, our county clerk
and a former magistrate, has
operated his lawn care business for years from his home.
It seems to me that it would
be virtually impossible for
him not to know he needed a
permit to operate a business
from his home.
When someone takes on
the role of elective office
they are held to a higher
standard, and this kind of
smacks of how locally and
nationally, our leaders apply
the laws, but don’t have to
From insider trading in
Congress to right here in
Lawrenceburg, why can’t
our leaders be the example
instead of the burden?
Editor’s note: According to a legal
notice in this week’s paper,
Denny has requested a conditional use permit through the
Board of Zoning Adjustments.
This tree hugger now has six new trees
have trees in my kitchen.
Yes, I know it’s not what
you’d expect to find, even
on a farm, but the mower
can’t get to them
Day, I’ve acquired
six new trees, and
they’re all babies.
You knew I was
a tree hugger,
They’ll go into
the ground just as Steenerson
soon as I decide
where they’ll be
happy. I will also
put a little mulch
and wire around them, to
ensure that I don’t drive over
them with the mower.
Placement of trees is
important to a landscape.
They don’t just add to the
value of your home, they add
to the value of your life.
We all like to live, right?
A healthy environment adds
value to your life in several
ways. The sight of a beautiful tree puts a smile on your
face and a song in your heart.
It also helps to shade your
house, reducing your electric
bill and keeping a little green
in your pocket at the same
Trees provide food, sometimes for you and sometimes
for the other wildlife calling
this planet home.
Trees are the lungs of
the planet. They take in the
carbon dioxide we release
through our bodies and
machines, and turn out oxygen, via photosynthesis.
A mature tree can take in
48 pounds of carbon dioxide
My six new trees will eventually take 288 pounds out
of the atmosphere each year.
My truck and I will average
10,000 miles of driving this
year, contributing 10,500
pounds of carbon dioxide to
the atmosphere. That means
I need about 219 trees to clean
up after me.
Fortunately, I have 17 acres
and most of them are covered
in mature trees. I can offset
my carbon footprint for both
my car and my house and a
neighbor or two. Even if you
live in town, you can help
improve your air by planting
Besides removing carbon
dioxide from the atmosphere
and generating oxygen, trees
also reduce air pollution, recycle water and control soil erosion. My new trees will also
provide me with food (two
are walnuts), spring color (two
redbuds and one magnolia)
and fall color (one yellow poplar), as soon as I decide where
to plant them.
Trees grow healthy when
given what they need, good
soil, appropriate water and
correct light. Knowing how
big they will get also helps.
I don’t want something that
could take out the roof of
the house, if it comes crash-
ing down during a storm. I
do want to be able to enjoy
admiring it’s colors, nuts and
flowers throughout the year.
I don’t want it to be a pain
to mow around. I actually
hope to plant them where
it already is a pain to mow.
I have a couple of spots in
The walnuts have to be
in a special place. They emit
hydrojuglone into the soil,
eliminating any other competitors that might try to
grow around them. The dropping nuts need to be out of
the way, but easy to gather.
Now, maybe you can
understand why I still have
trees in the kitchen. Eventually, they will all find a happy
home here on the farm.
They’ll provide more value
to my life and the planet’s. I’ll
also get a free work out and a
tan while putting them in the
I’ve heard that people actually pay for those two things.
I’ll give you several free sessions, if you’d like. I’ll even
throw in a live action animal
Spanky and Tiller can be
Now get outside and make
the world a better place. In
the end, you might just find
smile on your face.
Cheryl Steenerson is a
gardening columnist for The