Chapter: Perry County

Do you want the absolute best for your family and our Perry County community? So do we.

If you believe, as we do, that working together is the best way to create a better Perry County, then we invite you to be part of our local KFTC chapter.

We are a diverse group of Perry Countians – teachers, retired coal miners, students, unemployed, moms, grandparents and many more. We work together – as we have for 30 years – to protect our water and land, bring new energy and new jobs to our area, share our vision with elected officials and make sure Perry County is a safe place to call home for everyone.

We support each other, have fun and get things done. Come join us at our next potluck chapter meeting!

Recent Activities

Elizabeth Wooten, early KFTC leader, has passed away

Elizabeth Wooten, a KFTC member who helped lead the campaign in the 1980s to do away with the broad form deed, died on Monday. She was 91.

Elizabeth and her family fought for many years to protect their land from the strip mining that was rampant in Perry County. The book Making History: The First Ten Years of KFTC, included the following description:

On December 3, 1983, dozens of KFTC members rallied near Bulan at the farm of Perry County widow Elizabeth Wooten … to express their opposition to broad form deeds and their resolve to fight as long as necessary to end their abuses. The Wooten farm lay like a near island, almost surrounded by oceans of strip-mined land. The family had been fighting in court for months to keep Marandco Coal, holder of a broad form deed, off the property, where Elizabeth’s husband was buried. “Before my husband died, he asked [the family] not to let them come on here and strip mine,” Wooten said. “And we’re going to honor that promise. What kind of people would we be if we didn’t?”

With Wooten among the movement’s leaders, KFTC members helped passed a law in the 1984 General Assembly that outlawed the abuses of the broad form deed (these were deeds signed in the late 1800s / early 1900s that severed the ownership of the minerals under the land from the ownership of the land itself; in the 1950s the Kentucky courts interpreted these deeds to allow the mineral owner to strip mine the land without the permission of the surface land owner, and with no obligation to compensate for the damages done).

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KFTC asks for public hearings on Stream Protection rule

KFTC has asked the U.S. Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement for a series of public hearings in eastern Kentucky concerning that agency’s plans to propose a new Stream Protection Rule.

The letter, sent to Robert Evans, director of OSM’s Lexington office, asks for a “formal public hearing and public education event as part of the rule outreach strategy.

“In order to assure the best participation by impacted citizens, we request that the hearing be held in the evening if possible. We also suggest that the public education outreach occur before the actual hearing so that citizens will be better informed as to the actual contents of the proposed rule,” stated the letter from Joanne Golden Hill and Mary Love, co-chairs of KFTC’s Land Reform Committee.

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Citizens groups seek to ensure Kentucky officials enforce Clean Water Act (again!)

KFTC and several ally groups late Friday filed a motion to intervene in a state enforcement action against Frasure Creek Mining for violating the Clean Water Act at its coal mining operations in e

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Big win: Judge rejects deals between Kentucky officials and coal company

The Franklin Circuit Court on Monday issued two long-awaited orders rejecting settlement deals between the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet and Frasure Creek Mining arising from the coal company’s thousands of violations of the Clean Water Act from 2008 through 2011.

In extraordinarily vigorous language, Judge Phillip Shepherd said that due to the coal company’s actions, “The inherent danger of the violations at issue here to the environment is impossible to determine based on Frasure Creek's wholesale abdication of its monitoring and reporting responsibilities, and the cabinet's inability to fully investigate the environmental harm that is likely to have occurred.”

“Since October 2010, we have been in the courts to see that the law be enforced in the state of Kentucky,” said Ted Withrow, a member of KFTC's Litigation Team. “These rulings by Judge Shepherd serve to enforce that right of the people."

In 2010, Appalachian Voices, Kentucky Waterkeeper Alliance, Kentucky Riverkeeper, KFTC and several individuals made public more than 20,000 violations of the Clean Water Act from 2008 to 2010 by Frasure Creek and a second coal company, International Coal Group (which later settled out of court). Under the law, these violations could be subject to hundreds of millions of dollars in fines. On the 57th day, the cabinet and Frasure Creek entered a proposed consent agreement that included only 1,520 violations and combined fines of just $310,000.

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KentuckyElection.org has been updated for the November 4 election!

KFTC's voter guide website has been updated with new information about candidate stances, voting locations, key links and other information to help you cast an informed vote in the election on Tuesday, November 4. We've surveyed candidates running for the U.S. Senate and House, state legislative races, and local races in Louisville, Lexington, Danville, Berea, Richmond, Georgetown, Newport, Florence, Covington, Bowling Green and more!

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Chapter Feature:

Russell Oliver"KFTC empowers residents to bring about positive changes in their communities. It gives members confidence that they can make a difference. You are not one person, but part of a statewide organization of thousands supporting you and your cause."

-Russell Oliver, Perry County Chapter member

Regular Meetings:

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Hazard Community College Technical Campus
101 Vo-Tech Drive
Devert Owens Building, Room 118
Hazard, KY 41701
Monthly chapter meeting

Join us on the 3rd Monday of every other month for the Perry County chapter meeting. It is a great time to plan local work, discuss local and state-wide work, meet new people, and much more. Everyone is welcome and invited to attend! Hope to see you there!

Chapter Organizer:

Jessie Skaggs
Hazard, KY 41653
606-263-4982

Upcoming Events:

August 13

Its Good 2 Be Young In The Mountains

201 S. Main Street
Harlan, KY