Nicholasville’s Johnny Collier is seeking his fifth straight term on the city commission. He has served on the commission since 2005; He also served from 1995-1997.
Collier, 64, said he has a proven track record with his dedication to seeing Nicholasville prosper.
“My entire adult life I have spent doing things for Nicholasville and Jessamine County,” Collier said. “I spent more than 30 years in civic and school activities — everything from Rotary to the chamber of commerce and youth league programs to high-school programs.”
Collier touted serveral accomplishments that Nicholasville has seen during his time as city commissioner.
“I was the commissioner who started the new wastewater treatment plant that we have now finished, and I was the commissioner who started the improvements on the water plant,” he said.
Collier also pointed out that the city has had solid financial reports each year he has been on the commission.
“I think our city is run exceptionally well,” he said. “We have great audits, and we’ve have a great bond rating — those tell you how well the city is doing.”
Job creation is a priority for Collier.
“We need to provide as many jobs as possible,” he said. “We are in the process right now of bringing in some new businesses to provide new jobs.”
Job creation and revenue for the city go hand-in-hand, Collier said, adding that more jobs mean businesses are locating in Nicholasville or existing businesses are expanding.
“If we do that, that’s going to give us enough revenue to take care of what we’re planning on,” he said.
Collier is against raising taxes but acknowledged that sometimes tough decisions have to be made.
“I don’t like to raise taxes, and I don’t like to increase utility rates, but sometimes it’s necessary,” he said.
As commissioner over public safety, Collier said he understands the many needs facing the police and fire departments, including the need for new stations.
“We’ve been talking about this for a long time,” he said. “We have a fire station on Elizabeth Street, but (the distance) from that station to the back of Brannon Crossing is really pushing the ISO (Insurance Service Office) boundaries, and ISO determines the protection classes for insurance for the city, including homeowner’s insurance.”
Collier said besides the Brannon Crossing area, the west side of Nicholasville, near the schools, also needs a fire station.
“It’s going to have to happen if we’re going to keep those (ISO) rates down to where they should be,” Collier said. “A fire station in Brannon Crossing will not only cover that area but the north end of U.S. 27 for future development.”
Collier said one of those stations will have to be built within the next five years.
Collier is against the movement to change the form of government.
“If Nicholasville decides that they want to have a council, then they need to know the biggest difference is the size,” he said. “That means twice the salaries, so where is that money going to come from? People’s taxes are going to go up because someone’s got to pay for those people being there and taking a bigger government.”