This story originally ran in the Aug. 11 issue of the Community Voice. For your own subscription, call 270-384-9454.
An enthusiastic Heather Spoon updated the fiscal court on recent activity by the Economic Development Authority Monday night and said the county is getting interest from several prospective clients.
Spoon went before the court to ask for a $150,000 commitment to help match a potential $456,000 grant. Magistrates approved the request and spent several minutes speaking with Spoon about improvements at the Green River Commerce Park and various EDA initiatives.
“If you have ridden out North 55 in the last year or so you will see there is a lot going on at the Green River Commerce Park,” Spoon said.
Spoon began assisting EDA part time after the board recruited her in 2021 to assist in recruitment and marketing efforts.
“We need jobs here. I think everybody in this room would say that we need jobs here,” she told the court. “The EDA has worked hard to develop a program to make Adair County attractive, to be able to entice businesses to come look at us.”
Spoon said the county competes with surrounding counties as well as counties across the state but is getting attention from several prospects.
“We are actually right now competing with a couple of other states for a big fish that we are hoping to land,” Spoon said. “We have to do everything we can to get companies to say, ‘Yes, we want to come to Adair County, Ky.’”
Spoon said they are currently working on three projects from companies that are looking at Adair County “in a very serious way.”
Should EDA be approved for the grant, the funds could be used for various needs. Should one of the prospective clients be ready to strike a deal, EDA could use the funds to help that along, Spoon said. It could be used to develop build-ready pads, which includes getting groundwork and utility work ready so clients could get a building constructed as quickly as possible.
EDA has partnered with K & M Services, LLC., to recruit business to the Green River Commerce Park , which Spoon said is considered one of the top industrial parks in the state.
“We have a momentum that is going right now and I think that we are just poised for some- body to come into that park,” Spoon said.
Magistrates complimented the work EDA has put in recently to improve the park and recruit new business.
“I want thank you all for what you have done,” magistrate Sammy Baker said. “It (the park) has changed so much. You have been so progressive. Every day you go by it just looks better.”
All magistrates attending the meeting voted in favor of committing the $150,000 matching funds. Magistrate Terry Hadley said he would like to see a rehabilitation center in the park that would train people for jobs that come to the park .
Spoon said EDA intends to also ask the city of Columbia to match the $150,000.
By Sharon Burton