Girdler says SPEDA auction a success

File Photo i CJ

SPEDA president Chris Girdler updated board members on a recent auction and land sales. Girdler said holding onto the items held no advantage to the economic development organization.

SPEDA president Chris Girdler told board members Thursday that the recent land and tool auction had been a success.

The Somerset Pulaski County Development Authority conducted the sale in July to offload items it inherited from the county's former economic body, the Somerset-Pulaski County Development Foundation.

Girdler told the board that the auction, held at the old Palm Beach building, had been attended by a good number of bidders.

Besides tools, the economic board also auctioned off an approximate 6-acre piece of property located just off of Monticello Street, adjoining the Lake Cumberland Regional Airport.

Girdler said he was excited to offload a piece of property that held no advantage to the board. Placing it into the hands of the private sector created a tax base, he said.

Furthermore, the new owner of the property was looking at building either a warehouse or an apartment complex. That would in turn create construction jobs, "establishing a greater tax base, rather than us just holding it and having no use for it," Girdler said.

"Of course, we're going to take the money from that sale, reinvest it back into the community and help with a lot of the different initiatives and endeavors we have undertaken."

Girdler said that another property sale, a 9-acre piece of land on Coin Road close to Ky. 461, had closed, with that property going to Industrial Leasing LLC.

An upcoming property purchase by the county with an eye on constructing a 190-acre industrial park was advancing, Girdler reported.

The "Garner property," located at the intersection of East Ky. 80 and Pine Hill Road, recently began the process of having the first step of an environment report done.

"Through Lake Cumberland Area Development District, they were able to find funding, so we're out nothing on getting the Phase I Environmental done," Girdler said.

That report should be done within two weeks, he said.

Also at Thursday's SPEDA meeting, Somerset Mayor Alan Keck informed the board that he recently had a meeting with representatives of the U.S. Army and the Golden Knights about the possibility of bringing them to Somerset's airport for a jump.

Keck made a jump with the Knights in Tennessee in April. He said bringing the group here would both promote the Army and bring a broader regional recognition of the Lake Cumberland Regional Airport.

Keck insinuated that if the Golden Knights came to Pulaski, he may ask Girdler to make a jump with them.

"I'm in, if that opportunity exists," Girdler responded.

Keck then said that Somerset Police Chief William Hunt already had committed."If they come, he's jumping."