The following article by David Strange was originally published on 31 Jan 2016.
Hunters Hollow is the smallest of Bullitt County's eight cities, and by small I mean tiny. The little pie-slice-shaped city, located between East Blue Lick Road and Hillview Boulevard in northern Bullitt County, encompasses less than one tenth of one square mile of territory. The 2010 census reports the population as 386, in 117 households. It is almost entirely made up of residential houses and apartments. Virtually the lone exception is Material Handling Systems, Inc. (MHS).
MHS is a design and manufacturing business founded in 1999. According to its web page, MHS has been employee-owned since 2008. The company prides itself on drawing from its "employees' experience and expertise to become one of the leading material handling system integrators in North America."
Hunters Hollow is another of the small cities in the area that were incorporated during the 1970's out of concern for what they saw as active annexation efforts by Hillview, its much larger neighbor to the east. Today, the city of Hillview almost completely surrounds Hunters Hollow, so many in the area feel justified in their predictions. But over the years, early fears have been replaced with cooperation among all the northern cities.
Hunters Hollow was incorporated as a city in 1979, named after the existing residential subdivision. Small cities such as this are what I think about when I say I admire small-town leaders. I admire them because they have most of the troubles of larger cities, but few of the resources. Mayor Linda Parker has served in that capacity for 30 years. The first 15 of those years were unpaid. The second 15 have not been much better, paying a meager $300 a month (City Council members get only $25). But such people don't take on civic roles for the money. Such people are truly drawn to the purpose of helping their community.
Mayor Parker tells me that she never really intended to serve this long. In fact, toward the end of nearly every four-year term she would tell herself that "this was the last one." And then she would agree to serve "just one more time." Nevertheless, at age 67, Linda is pretty serious about it this time. When this term is up in 2018, she thinks she might just retire from the job for good.
It might be surprising to many, but serving as mayor of a small city can be very demanding, even frustrating. There is no staff to do any work or even take phone calls. When I talked to them last, Linda and husband (and town councilman) Ronald Parker had been out repairing something that had been reported. Complaints can range from the very serious sewer problems that the city has been dealing with, to a late-night call complaining about a dead animal in a ditch.
Mayor Parker says that one of the toughest jobs is having to go one-on-one knocking at a homeowner's door asking the person to straighten up the yard or cut grass or meet some other city ordinance. Her favorite times were when she used to go door to door greeting new residents, but now it is difficult to keep up.
In such a small city, it is challenging to find enough citizens who are willing to serve in the city government. It is a continuing challenge to fill the city council positions or even maintaining a legal quorum to conduct public business. The good side is that there is seldom a lot of business to conduct. At a recent monthly meeting that I attended, the meeting lasted only a half hour, which is fairly typical.
In a town this size, there is little need for a city hall. Meetings are held at the KentuckyOne Medical Center Jewish South (formerly known as Jewish Medical Center South) Doctors Office Building at 7:00 p.m. on the third Tuesday of each month. Current office holders are Mayor Linda Parker, Council Members Caprice Price, Phillip Price, Ronald Parker, and Bonnie Israel, and City Clerk Recka "Ricki" Daniels, who has held that office for 32 years. Ricki says that she plans to resign from the secretary job when Mayor Parker's term ends.
More information can be found about Hunters Hollow through its web site at www.cityofhuntershollow.org, which includes city ordinances and other useful information, by accessing it FaceBook page at "City of Hunters Hollow," or by calling 502-957-4205.
Copyright 2016 by David Strange, Shepherdsville KY. All rights are reserved. No part of the content of this page may be included in any format in any place without the written permission of the copyright holder.