Boyle P&Z won’t replace open position

Published 6:50 am Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Planning and Zoning is one person smaller in Danville-Boyle County, now that Administrative Assistant Jennie Hollon has resigned to pursue other interests. And it’s likely to stay smaller for the foreseeable future: P&Z plans to outsource some of Hollon’s duties and not replace her position, P&Z Chair Jerry Leber said.

The P&Z Commission approved hiring McDaniel Wealth Management to do the agency’s bookkeeping at an annual fee of $4,800.

P&Z Director Steve Hunter said Hollon was “awesome” and everything “was great,” but she decided in mid-September to give her two weeks notice. He said she has other businesses that needed her attention.

Email newsletter signup

“We appreciate Jennie’s service and her time and work and the good things she did for us,” Leber said while announcing Hollon’s departure.

P&Z officials said there is potentially savings for their budget by reducing the agency’s headcount by one.

Without paying a full-time salary or any of the associated costs such as health benefits or required state retirement contributions, the change could “save thousands of dollars,” Hunter said.

Hollon’s last day was Sept. 30.

Some P&Z officials suggested one project that could use some of the savings could be a “Smart Growth” conference that the commission is interested in hosting in Danville-Boyle County.

The P&Z Commission voted unanimously at their October meeting to form a committee that would plan the conference, which Hunter said could be a one-day event featuring a national-level speaker.

The goal of the conference would be “to clearly educate the public on smart growth techniques,” he said. That could include farm preservation, appropriate “streetscaping” or good ways to create mix-used development. “There’s 50 topics we could latch onto, but we want to bring in some national folks that are really smart, energetic about this. The goal is to educate our community on smart growth and why we should embrace some techniques and reject others.”

Smart Growth is a movement to plan community development in such a way as to avoid urban sprawl and leave the environment in better condition.

Hunter said Mayor Mike Perros approached him with the idea for the conference.

“The mayor asked us to take a role. He’s involved with Bluegrass Tomorrow and Smart Growth initiatives in the state; he’s attending a lot of conferences,” Hunter said. “He’s seeing a lot of stuff he thinks could be implemented in our community to make us a better place than we are.”

Hunter guesstimated the conference could cost between $5,000 and $8,000. It could be held this coming spring, but could also be pushed into the fall of 2019 or further if necessary, according to P&Z officials. While some suggested savings from Hollon’s departure could be used for the conference, Hunter also noted the smaller staff size could also slow down P&Z’s ability to coordinate the event.

Hunter said he’s also interested in seeing if P&Z could partner with a private business to help pay for the conference. And he’s spoken with the local Smart Growth Boyle group about being involved, as well.