Mayor implores residents to consider vaccine 1

Leitchfield Mayor Rick Embry speaks during Monday night’s Leitchfield City Council meeting.

In light of the recent news that Grayson County was among the top 10 counties in the nation for COVID-19 rates, Leitchfield Mayor Rick Embry this week implored local residents to consider becoming vaccinated.

Opening Monday night’s regular Leitchfield City Council meeting, Embry said he is proud to recognize the many successful professionals whom have come out of Grayson County, “but it’s embarrassing to turn on national TV and see that Grayson County is amongst the highest in the nation of unvaccinated people.”

Embry said everyone knows people whom have contracted and died from the virus.

“You’re talking about people who are in an age group that should not be dying, and I’m begging Grayson Countians to, if you’ve not been vaccinated, consider that,” he said.

According to Embry, he and the city council members have received many questions from community members regarding what the city will do regarding the vaccine, and he said the city will do nothing unless directed to do so by Gov. Andy Beshear and the Grayson County Health Department.

“But I want to encourage you personally and as Mayor of the city of Leitchfield to encourage everyone to get vaccinated,” said Embry, who added that, if necessary, Leitchfield may at some point establish regulations in regards to unvaccinated city employees.

At press time, Grayson County’s rate of COVID-19 infections had fallen to number 56 in the nation, according to The New York Times.

Grayson County Public Health Director Joshua Embry, in a report posted to the Grayson County Health Department’s Facebook page on Wednesday, said, in the past four weeks, there have been new 19 deaths in Grayson County reported to be as a result of COVID-19.

In a statement, health department officials said they “are heart broken over the deaths in our county related to COVID. We get to know each individual person through their contact tracing, daily check-ins, etc.

“Furthermore, we get to know all of the families as they update us on their love one’s health condition when their loved ones are unable to speak.

“We, like many members of the community, are saddened and shaken over the amount of deaths recently — as well as how young some of these people have been. It is something we carry daily with us; especially the contact tracers that track and monitor.

“There is so much that we see, hear, and are a part of. However, we cannot begin to fathom what the families are going through that are dealing with such loss.

“To these families, please know that we truly care about all of you and that you are all in our prayers.

“Please let us know if we can be of any assistance.”

As Grayson County is approaching a confirmed total of 4,300 COVID-19 cases since the pandemic began in March 2020, Embry said the county continues to have a “break through percentage (people vaccinated yet infected) of around 5 to 6%.”

To date nearly 49% of Grayson County residents have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, with the lowest vaccination rates remaining in the 12-17 and 18-29 age groups.

In other business, the city council:

  • Approved the second and final reading of the 2021 City of Leitchfield property tax ordinance, which will set this year’s rates at 12 cents per $100 of assessed valuation on motor vehicles, 26.33 cents per $100 of assessed valuation on personal property, and 16 cents per $100 of assessed valuation on real estate.
  • Approved a request to rezone 1595 Elizabethtown Rd. from an R-5 (residential multi-family) property to a C-1 (highway commercial) property, after which the first of two readings of an ordinance making this change was held.

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