LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) – Some Clark County homeowners said they have a dead animal removal problem and they don’t like the county leaders’ solution for it.
They said the new compost site near the fairgrounds is bringing unwelcome smells and pests. County leaders say this location was the best option because it was located on a high ridge.
“The county only owns so many properties, and obviously we don’t have the funds to purchase large plats of land,” Judge Executive Chris Pace said.
According to the Clark County Department of Roads and Solid Waste’s Facebook page, the county government sends an employee to pick up any dead animals, a free service to farmers. Local property owners called this site an ‘unpleasant’ and ‘immoral’ addition.
“The problem is, nobody wants it in their backyard,” said Bobby Bailey, whose property is near the compost site
Bailey said he started noticing a bad smell in April.
He found out it was coming from the new facility. He says the cons of the site outweigh the benefits.
“I can’t let my pet out here unless I’m gardening with a double-barreled shotgun, or a coyote is going to pick him up,” Bailey said.
Judge Pace said the site was built to lower the cost of dead animal removal, and that it was unanimously passed.
“We were faced with the proposition of either allowing animals to be spread throughout the county in different locations, where they could potentially leak bacteria and other substances into our water sheds and other areas, or we could coordinate with the University of Kentucky and other agencies to find a way that is more environmentally safe,” he said.
Danny Hall’s property is also nearby. He said he’s seen animal body parts sticking up out of the piles.
“The smell is what is really bad,” Hall said.
He and Bailey said they’ve talked to the fiscal court and they say their local leaders aren’t listening.
“I think compost, at the end of the day, will be a positive thing for farmers in Clark County…..not only will we be able to safely remove dead animals from the fields of Clark County, we will also be able to produce a nitrogen-rich soil that can then be repurposed,” Judge Pace said.
A county employee told us about 100 animals are buried so far. He says it takes around 29 days to break down a 1,000 lb animal.
The compost facility was opened on April 12.