EDP changes meeting locations to Denyo

Published 1:59 pm Monday, March 26, 2018

The Economic Development Partnership is moving its monthly meeting location to Denyo Manufacturing, over the objections of Danville City Commissioner Denise Terry.

The EDP board voted Wednesday to use a meeting space at Denyo’s factory in the Boyle County Minor Industrial Park for the next six months. The move was needed because the new, larger EDP board has outgrown the McKinney Conference Center in Constitution Square Historic Site, according to EDP members.

Terry objected to using Denyo, a private business, during the EDP’s February meeting, causing the EDP to delay a decision. She voted against the motion Wednesday.

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“I don’t think it looks good to have it on a private business property,” Terry said in February. “I think it may look like we’re showing favoritism; I don’t think it’s very inviting for the public to come to.”

Others on the board pushed back against Terry’s position.

“They’ve offered, they have a brand new facility, I think that’s Joey (Harris’) effort to allow the community to come in and see what they’re doing,” Boyle County Industrial Foundation representative John Albright said in February.

At Wednesday’s meeting, EDP Chair Ben Nelson came armed with a spreadsheet of multiple options for where the EDP could relocate, along with pros and cons for each location. Nelson said it seemed the public meeting room at Inter-County Energy was “mentioned as ‘OK’ by most of the people who weighed in.”

But before the conversation went any further, David Maynard — one of three Boyle County-appointed EDP members — made a motion to “go with Denyo for six months.”

Albright seconded the motion.

“I have a second; let’s have some discussion,” Nelson said.

“I think Denyo is a great location for us,” Boyle County Judge-Executive Harold McKinney said. “It’s easy access, it’s parking, it’s a great opportunity to deal with one of our partners on a regular basis. And … I bet nobody in the industrial portion of our county stands up for this EDP more than Joey Harris.”

Cindy Ellsworth, a Boyle County Industrial Foundation appointee, said after six months, the EDP could move locations again and “go with something on the city municipal end, go with the water treatment plant,” for example.

“This board needs to make a decision on this,” she said. “How difficult can this be to just come up with a meeting place? If we can’t do that quickly — it’s time.”

“Any other thoughts?” Nelson asked.

“I think everybody knows how I feel about it,” Terry said.

Albright said six months is a “fair time to see how it goes” and the EDP can make adjustments if there are problems.

“My bottom line is — we are not here to showcase; we are here to do business,” Terry said. “And we need to do that openly and publicly. That’s all I have to say.”

Albright said the portion of the building where the EDP will meet will be open to the public.

“We’re not getting into a manufacturing part of their facility that they don’t want people in,” Albright said. “… I think we’ll be OK for six months and see how it goes.”

After the vote, Terry asked about specifics of attending the meeting — “where do we go?”

Nelson said details about attending the meeting will be distributed at a later date.

The Kentucky Open Meetings Act requires all public agencies to hold their regular meetings “at specified times and places which are convenient to the public.” It further requires public agencies to provide schedules of their regular meetings “by ordinance, order, resolution, bylaws, or by whatever other means may be required for the conduct of business of that public agency. The schedule of regular meetings shall be made available to the public.”