Court must make difficult choice if deal can’t be done

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Our Views

 A potential of 1,000 jobs or a group of upset church members...what weights the most?

This isn’t a math problem...it is a problem being faced by members of Bullitt Fiscal Court.

Of course, members are hoping that a dispute between members of Bardstown Junction Baptist and developers who would like to see distribution warehouses on nearly 140 acres surrounding the church is resolved.

The matter really isn’t church versus development. The matter revolves around the age-old problem of property rights.

And how much right does the person next door have when you want to do something with your property?

In a perfect world, fiscal court members won’t have a tough decision. They will have the blessing of the church members to vote for the rezoning because a deal has been worked out.

That deal might be money to relocate the church or it might just be cash money and the church remains. Or it could be installing some types of barriers or berms to hide the buildings.

If that doesn’t happen before the Sept. 6 meeting, fiscal court members have a very, very tough decision.

But how tough is it?

First, bringing in 1,000-5,000 jobs to a community should be an easy choice. With the state of the economy, people from all over the state would be coming to apply for jobs.

So, in terms of jobs, it should be an easy one.

Second, the distribution-type businesses which have located in the county are basically quiet, non-disturbing facilities. Issues like drainage must be managed and cannot affect surrounding neighbors.

Traffic is something that would definitely impose an impact on the community.

Third, the tax dollars brought into the county would be phenomenal. It would be so great that it would be hard not to see a city, such as Shepherdsville, look to annex that way for the occupational taxes.

The only problem is that there are no guarantees in life.

If the property is rezoned, there is no guarantee who will develop the property and what type of business, if any, ever locates there.

The current developers, Red Rock, seem to be very hospitable and willing to work with the neighbors. But what happens if someone else actually develops the property?

There are many questions surrounding the rezoning request. The concerns of the surrounding property owner are valid.

But more than anything, they are upset about the lack of notification at the planning stage and they were miffed by the low offer for their property.

That is why the $5 million price tag thrown out did not seem out of line by members of the church.

Ultimately, the magistrates will have to decide what is the best use of the property. That is really all zoning matters revolve around. To change the use of the property, there are certain legal reasons that must be attached.

If the property is rezoned, a legal challenge could follow. That could ultimately kill whatever deal might be in place for the new business.

By the way, if you thought being a fiscal court member was an easy job, think again.