EDP should stay clear of Kinder Morgan pipeline

Published 6:17 am Tuesday, December 26, 2017

The new Danville-Boyle County Economic Development Partnership board has been asked to publicly take a stand, on both the state and federal level, against the Kinder Morgan pipeline repurposing. Not surprisingly, the “Old Guard” leadership of the former board seems to be advocating for it.

Is this really where the focus of our EDP should be? City and county governments have already weighed in on the issue. Wouldn’t we be better served by leadership learning to set goals and just as important hitting them? JOBS?

Doesn’t our community already have a reputation of appearing anti-business? Why add the organization designated to represent economic development to the mix?

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EDP leadership have already shown a propensity to confuse activity with productivity, so why encourage more of the same? Why not focus on the mission at hand? JOBS! Is meandering into social agendas where we really want our EDP to be?

The president and CEO, who served in the same capacity for the Boyle County Industrial Foundation, tried to sell the notion that Economic Development and Community Development were the same. It took an $80,000 consultant to silence the practice. Aren’t we now opening the gate and saying “come on back?”

The mayor, city manager and county judge-executive already report monthly to the EDP board table, overseen by the EDP leadership, allowing any EDP decision appear to carry the weight of city and county government, furthering the notion our EDP represents a third form of unelected government.

Quality of life involves risk. Aren’t we reminded each time we drive a few feet past a gas or hazardous chemical truck? Our community has taken a stand, but shouldn’t our EDP stay clear of the risk and focus on a more relevant mission? Jobs?

If the “Old Guard” wants to shove us back into the mud that caused us to be viewed as a community unfriendly to business and industry, by all means join the crusade and risk potential industry and business finding another place to call home.

If the new board is going to retain the same paid leadership, shouldn’t leadership be reminded the EDP is about industry, business, and jobs and not social crusades? Isn’t it time we started recognizing reality and ask what is the goal? Individuals and elected governments can take care of social issues.

Our EDP should stay focused on the mission and job at hand. JOBS!

Randy Gip Graham