• By John McGary Woodford Sun Editor

EDA discusses distillery, small business checklist

The Woodford Economic Development Authority’s (EDA) monthly meeting Friday, Sept. 28, featured an update on a distillery considering purchasing land near Midway Station and a checklist designed to make it easier to open a small business here. Executive Director Lucas Witt brought members up to date on Lexington-based Bluegrass Distillers’ effort to build a distillery on the Mitchell property near Midway Station. He said the community development block grant backed by the Midway City Council that will offer the company a low-interest loan was approved the day before by the state Cabinet for Economic Development. (At last week’s Midway City Council meeting, Mayor Vandegrift said the city will not be on the hook for repayment of the company’s 20 percent share of the loan. The distillery will employ 18, he said.) Witt also said Woodford Chamber of Commerce CEO Emily Downey had developed a small business checklist that will include a list of government offices that new business owners need to contact. EDA Treasurer Maria Bohanan made a motion that 200 pamphlets be printed, at a cost of up to $200, and be kept at the chamber and local government offices. The motion passed unanimously. Witt said he was getting quotes for a company to manage the EDA’s website and was looking for people who understood economic development. Midway Station A motion to pay up to $2,000 for filing and surveying costs for a company that will store golf carts on two lots at Midway Station passed unanimously. Dever Inc. will employ 30 people. An easement also needs to be removed. During the public comment portion of the meeting, Vandegrift said encroachment permits for new driveways for the company were approved by the council the previous Monday. When closed, the sale of land to the company will reduce the debt owed by the EDA and City of Midway on the industrial park to less than $900,000, he said. B-5 strategy After a 39-minute executive session, members unanimously approved a committee slate charged with coming up with a strategy on how to sell B-5 (highway business) land at Midway Station. EDA member Paul Schreffler will chair the committee and be joined by Alex Riddle, Gene Hornback, Bohanan and, as an ad hoc member, Versailles-Midway-Woodford County Planning and Zoning Director Pattie Wilson. The committee will forward its recommendations to the EDA’s commercial real estate marketing firm, SVN, which recently hired former EDA Chair John Soper. Financials The EDA unanimously approved a Sept. 23 financial report showing an ending balance of $218,708.01, an escrow account of $60,0560.40 and a net balance of $154,219.97. The report included bills of $1,200 to Wright’s Farm Service for mowing at Midway Station, $764.64 to Chicago Title Insurance, $2,223 to Moore Law Office and $250 to Bohanan, who paid the EDA’s annual special purpose governmental entity fee out of her own pocket. The treasurer’s report of Sept. 20 was also unanimously approved and showed land assets of $2,904,750, total assets of $3,123,458.01 and an operating fund of $158,657.61.

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