• John McGary, Woodford Sun Staff

EDA to seek expanded Sunday by-the-drink hours

The Woodford County Economic Development Authority (EDA) voted unanimously Friday to ask Woodford Fiscal Court to allow eligible businesses to sell liquor by the drink Sunday two hours earlier than is currently allowed. Chairman John Soper said he'd been approached by two citizens and representatives of two businesses who want county businesses to be allowed to begin selling drinks at 11 a.m. on Sunday. ". Right now, the county regulation is you can't serve liquor by the drink until 1 p.m. - the cities are 11 a.m. The disadvantage is it limits their ability to provide brunch; people want a Mimosa or Bloody Mary at 11 brunch, and it's kind of conflicting, especially when people say, 'I did it in Versailles, why can't I do it here?' or 'I did it in Midway, why can't I do it here?'" Soper said. Soper said during a meeting with people considering building a 'boutique hotel' somewhere in the county, the potential investors questioned the different start times for liquor sales. "Sunday brunch would be a big part of their business and they were questioning the discrepancy in the regulations ." Soper said. "I don't know if it's our place or not, but I kind of think it is, because we've got two requests, and I'd be happy to write a letter and present it to the fiscal court . to ask them to change the regulation." Soper said he'd also spoken with people who'd like to see the same closing hours for bars and restaurants in the cities and county, but were less concerned about the "shutdown period." None of the members expressed opposition, and a motion authorizing Soper to write a letter to Judge-Executive John Coyle was unanimous. Engineers' meeting Soper said a meeting between representatives of More Than a Bakery and local elected officials led to a decision to have public and private engineers involved in Big Sink Road-area projects meet twice next month. Some people who live near the Big Sink Road area where More Than A Bakery plans to build say they're worried over increased flooding and other problems. "From that meeting came the thought process that we need to get all these engineers from these different projects together . and not only look at their individual projects, but challenge them to look at this thing regionally ." Soper said. "I don't know if we'll come up with a solution. I don't know if a solution can be arrived at. But I do know that everybody's committed to do it ." Soper said. FNU Soper briefed the council on plans by Frontier Nursing University to move its headquarters next year to property owned by the Kentucky Methodist Home, which will move its operations to Jessamine County. Soper said he'd met recently with officials from the Internet-based school, which will bring its students to the site once a quarter for a week. They have a daunting task, Soper said - including having to replace every roof there. "We may not be able to do anything (for) them. They're teachers and finance people. They're not bankers and industrial people, so I think we may be able to offer some advice on how to do some things," Soper said. New member New EDA member and Midway resident Ron Layman was introduced at the start of the meeting. Soper said Layman's business and banking background and position with Republic State Mortgage were "very important." Motions to make Mike Coleman vice-chair (succeeding Ed Crowley, who resigned in February) and have Layman replace Coleman as treasurer were unanimous. LBAR grant For the fourth year in a row, the Lexington-Bluegrass Association of Realtors presented a check to the Woodford EDA. This year's donation of $2,000 was presented by Christel Long, who joked that there were no strings attached save the expectation that the EDA will continue to help create jobs in the area.

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