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Planning and Zoning Commission Pushes Back Against Complaints

Commission Goes Back To Monthly Meetings

Robert Moore

Herald Staff

The Harrodsburg-Mercer County Planning and Zoning Commission is pushing back against criticisms leveled against Executive Director Shawn Moore.

“It seems like we get more press at the Harrodsburg City Commission than we do here,” said Jim McGlone at the last zoning commission meeting.

McGlone was referring to complaints lodged against Moore at two city meetings, but especially the one on Aug. 13, when Doug McKinney of Rags to Riches accused Moore of taking down signs McKinney put up to advertise the 127 Yard Sale and the U.S. 68 Yard Sale.

Moore admitted to removing two of the signs, which he said he was bound to do by city zoning ordinances, which are approved by the city commission. He said the signs had been attached to utility poles and were in a right-of-way, which violates state law. Moore also said he removed another 15 signs that were not connected to the yard sale.

At the same meeting, two developers, Paul Thompson and Chuck Nichols, said Moore held up a building permit necessary for them to start construction on the first of 27 homes to be built on a five-acre lot on Shewmaker Lane. At the meeting, it was determined that the permit had only been held up for a week, but the developers were unhappy with how they had been treated in Harrodsburg.

“If you were a true businessman, you’d be an idiot to move here,” Nichols said.

Moore said Thompson and Nichols had failed to file a letter of credit or a 15-percent bond, which would allow the city to finish the road if the developers didn’t.

The developers also complained that Moore, who was then on medical leave, was hard to track down. At last week’s meeting, Moore said it might be time to bring in a part-time employee to work at the office. While he and Building Inspector Bill Durham try to cover for each other, there was only so much they could do.

McGlone noted that in other municipalities, a city employee—Moore is technically an employee of the zoning commission, not the city—handles ordinance enforcement, which includes city ordinances concerning signs.

“I think that should be designated to someone in the city,” McGlone said. “It’s a no-win situation.”

In other business, the Harrodsburg-Mercer County Planning and Zoning Commission:

  • Approved a final plat amendment submitted by Jason Shewmaker to consolidate two lots at the Brentwood subdivision. The property is zoned R2—high density residential.
  • Approved a site plan amendment submitted by Philip and Sarah Steele to construct five additional storage buildings at Twin Hill Storage. The property is zoned B3—general business.
  • Agreed to amend the bylaws to go back to a monthly meeting schedule starting next month.

The next meeting of the Harrodsburg-Mercer County Planning and Zoning Commission will be at 5:30 on Tuesday, Oct. 9, upstairs at Harrodsburg City Hall.

To learn more, check out this week’s issue of the Harrodsburg Herald.

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