County clerk candidates pledge Saturday hours, customer service

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By Forrest Berkshire, Editor

Nelson County residents with business at the County Clerk’s Office won’t have to take off time during the traditional workday, according to both candidates running for Nelson County Clerk.

Democrat Jeanette Hall Sidebottom and Republican Kelly Pulliam both said during the Kentucky Standard and PLG 13 political debates Wednesday night that if elected clerk, they plan to have Saturday hours.

The devil’s in the details, though.

“Saturday hours is doable,” Pulliam said. “I’ve got 60 counties out in the state of Kentucky that currently have Saturday hours.”

Pulliam gave Jessamine County as an example, which cut Thursday ours to make Saturday morning hours possible without adding to payroll costs. He said he was open to other options, but was “leaning” toward the Jessamine model.

Sidebottom pledged Saturday hours if elected, but said it was irresponsible to commit to details without researching it once elected.

“There are scheduling issues you have to look at, there’s public notification you have to look at, you have to determine where those hours are going to be made up from to taken from, or there will be additional costs to taxpayers.”

Sidebottom also stressed her previous experience at the clerk’s office throughout the debate.

“I am the only candidate with experience at the clerk’s office,” Sidebottom said. “I worked the front line, one-on-one, on a daily basis for 12 years before taking a supervisory position with the company I now work for.”

“When I take office in January, I will use everything available to make your transaction a smooth one and provide the service that’s fair to all. The changes I make will be noticeable.”

Pulliam said his educational background combined with experience as a business manager and a human resources manager set him apart, and described himself as a “solution-oriented person.”

“I have managed budgets. I have managed people,” Pulliam said. “I could step into the county clerk’s office and, you have to know how to manage a budget and manage people, and I have done that.”

Pulliam said he holds two degrees from Indiana University Southeast and has worked as a human resources manager and a business manager, which he said he could bring to the County Clerk’s Office to make it run more efficiently. Pulliam said he has been involved in several organizations over the past year as he has prepared for running for clerk and has “volunteered for nearly everything.”

He has four children and two grandchildren arrived in the past year.

Sidebottom is a lifelong resident of Nelson County and grew up in the Maple Hill area. She lives in Boston with her husband, Mike. They have two children and two grandchildren. She said directly after graduating Bardstown High School, she entered the workforce at a convenience store where she learned “the meaning of hard work and responsibility.”