Magistrates air concerns on partnership

By BY MARY GARRISON MINYARD mgarrison@cadizrecord.com

Trigg County magistrates are looking to the City of Cadiz for answers on a proposed interlocal agreement that would establish a parks and recreation committee to oversee construction on a multi-use facility at Trigg Recreation Complex.

Magistrates on Tuesday during a special-called meeting of Trigg County Fiscal Court requested Judge-Executive Hollis Alexander set up a meeting with Cadiz City Council to address concerns before moving forward with a resolution to approve the agreement.

Magistrates posed a number of questions surrounding the agreement, including future upkeep expense and clauses that allow for either the city or county to discontinue its participation with written notice some worried could leave the county responsible for a building on its property without future help from the city or Tourism.

District 3 Magistrate Jon Goodwin questioned those opt-out clauses contained in the draft proposal and the city's decision to hire a parks and recreation director before the county had committed to the proposed partnership.

"It lookds like the cart's way out in front of the horse, don't it?" Goodwin said. "â ¦There's going to need to be something done, because when we first come in office in 2007, in Stan's first thing as judge-executive was to appoint several committees and delegate lots of duties and things. There was a parks and recreation committee, at that point in time it was appointed here, and Mayor (Lyn) Bailey and company appointed one there. When we started having ideas of doing repairs â ¦ talk about spending money on the Complex to upgrade the Complex, they couldn't get out from under it quick enough. They quit-claim deed to their part of the Complex, but all the sudden we got this idea we're going to build a building, and we've already hired directors and we've already made all kinds of decisions when the county hasn't even come on board with board members yet or anything else, and I feel like we're kind of in the dark."

District 2 Magistrate Scotty Hampton said he'd wondered if returning some legal ownership to the city could offer some protection to the county.

"The city -- along with the county -- used to be â ¦ the owners of the Complex facility," Hampton said. "Would that be something possible to put their name back on this ground out there to where they do have the entity? Maybe not all fall on the county if something does take place."

District 5 John Gray said because the court needed clarity did not necessarily mean its members were opposed the project.

"I don't think you'll find anybody that's against it," Gray said. "No, we just don't know where we stand.

Alexander said he would confer with Cadiz Mayor Todd King to set up a meeting with city council.

"I'm not sure we can reverse anything that they've already done, but I think that we can get â ¦ some answers to some questions that we have before we move forward," Alexander said. "That's why I've opened this up tonight, so we can get those questions answered before -- as I told Magistrate Hampton, Scotty -- I wasn't going to sign anything until we made sure all our Is are dotted and our Ts are crossed, and I'm not going to, I assure you that, until this court wants to move forward with this."

The interlocal agreement as proposed would establish the six-member committee with three representatives appointed by King and three appointed by Alexander to serve. Of those appointments, one from each must be Cadiz-Trigg County Tourist and Convention Commission board members.

Tourism has tentatively committed to allocating 25 percent of its restaurant tax collections to the joint parks and recreation department to fund the building project.

As of Friday, Tourism had not been contacted to participate in the requested meeting, nor had a meeting date between the city and county been set.

In other business, magistrates voted to deny Kentucky Backhaul permission to place a microcell tower, which would allow for faster download speeds on mobile networks, in the area of Lookout Lane in Trigg County.

The company had previously petitioned the Cadiz-Trigg County Planning and Zoning Commission for permission to place the data tower on county right-of-way spaces, prompting the commission to request the county and City of Cadiz to obtain an outside attorney to draft franchise agreements on the space.

The city declined to solicit services of an outside attorney, citing no need as the company had not yet planned a tower on city right-of-way space.

The city also had concerns contracting with the attorney when it already retained the services of attorney Allen Wilson for city business.

The county had previously elected to table discussion on the matter until such time they could reach an agreement with the city on drafting agreements simultaneously.

However, at the request of resident Bob Peak and written objections from others who live on Lookout Lane, magistrates opted to deny data tower placement on that particular property. Peak cited concerns for wildlife preservation and disturbance of their personal property as reasons behind his objection. Peak has worked to establish a butterfly sanctuary, which he said was still growing, on his property.