Fort Mitchell, Kentucky
Graduate, Thoms More University
A 43-year resident of the Fort Mitchell community, Jude Hehman is raising his family in the city and is an involved citizen working with charitable organizations and the Northern Kentucky Business Community. Hehman and his partner Pete Nicolaou, founded Furlong Building Enterprises in 2010, at the height of the recession, and today it is a $20 million company with 14 employees. His company has received numerous awards for its explosive growth and impressive customer list, including the Tri-State Success Awards two years in a row, was named to the Fast 55 list of fastest growing companies five times. Jude served on various charitable boards—Redwood School, Welcome House, Holy Cross Parish Finance Committee.
As mayor of Fort Mitchell, Jude Hehman has restored openness and transparency within the city leadership, providing collaborative leadership that includes involvement of council, department heads and citizens in every critical decision. Working with the highly qualified city staff, Mayor Hehman has restored stability within the city, improving services and communication for the residents of Fort Mitchell.
I am running to continue keeping Fort Mitchell on the right track by increasing citizen involvement, open transparent government and balancing a budget without raising property taxes on the citizens. I have a proven track record, and I work to make Fort Mitchell a welcoming community to new families while honoring our wonderful traditions. My goal is to work to continue to improve our city. We are on the right track and I will keep working hard on our roads and sidewalks, safety, neighborhood beautification and economic development that makes sense for our community.
Under my leadership, we have put a team in place and working alongside with our councilmembers, we have implemented full transparency and our citizens are once again are welcome to attend and offer their comments at city council meetings. We have held public meetings and invited citizens to speak about issues we are faced with, and we've even taken some of our council caucus meetings out into the neighborhoods. Just a few of our accomplishments include:
Lowered property taxes (from previous decade)
Balanced budget; no property tax increases for all four years
Historic business district beautification & new developments
Supported city traditions; understanding our history
Restored open meeting policies; allowing citizens to speak
Improved Blessed Sacrament/Dixie Highway underpass
Developed plan for dealing with state-imposed pension funding changes
At the city level, our basic services include police, fire and EMS, trash and waste collection, street and sidewalk maintenance and keeping our parks and public spaces in good condition. I am not willing to cut any of these vital services.
Despite inflation and rising pension costs for our public employees, we have successfully balanced our budget every year without raising property taxes. Should the need arise, we could potentially look at other tools such as franchise fees to cover increases. But my focus is always on improving efficiency within city government.
MBA and dual BBA in Finance and Marketing
Blessed Sacrament Ministry
Saints Wrestling Club - Director/founder
CovCath - Assistant Wrestling Coach
Noel Rash - Beechwood Football - Head Coach
Ron Savignano - Beechwood School Board
Jack Westwood - Former Ky State Rep
Focused on Fort Mitchell
This decision was not taken lightly but I chose to run from the encouragement of my family, residents, and employees in our city government and former volunteers of our Fire Department. Our city leadership has lost focus on Fort Mitchell, we have a record number of businesses leaving, our fire department’s volunteers have been driven away, and now there is a proposed development that will overwhelm Beechwood Schools and I will block this from happening.
I will focus on what is best for Fort Mitchell with smart and strategic economic development that compliments our character, traditions, and standards. Aside from the condo development that will overwhelm Beechwood, the other critical issue is the development of the former Drawbridge site that exceeds $200 million. This site has sat dormant for too long, we have allow the developer to dictate when they want to make an investment in to our city. We have lost hundreds of thousand tax dollars because we haven’t leveraged our position. That tax loss combined with the business exiting like Von Lehman, Montgomery Inn, Sibcy Cline, Sullivan College, etc., will force the city to cut services or raise taxes. The current leadership attempted to slide through a $260k investment to widen the sidewalks and remove most of the trees lining the street.
None - the current leadership has neglected our volunteer Fire Department - the city struggles to get more than one apparatus out for a call. Our resident health and safety are at jeopardy. I will assign a task force comprised of council members, the fire department leadership and the firefighters, and other successful volunteer departments from the surrounding area to help redevelop our volunteer program.
There should not be any taxes raised - the government role is not to expand but to sufficiently cover the resident's needs on their budget. I will not vote for a tax increase.