Letter: Magistrates should suspend bourbon IRBs, not add zoning regulations

To the editor,

To the honorable Nelson County magistrates:

One of the key questions I asked during the debates Nelson County America First held was your philosophy on property rights.

Property rights is among the oldest of conservative ideals, reaching back to the Nation’s Founding Fathers who believed that government should sanction and protect the rights of landowners and their interests.

As I see it creating restrictions on property rights — by adding additional regulations and controls — is the antithesis of guarding property rights and saying you are for less government intervention.

The proliferation of distilleries and their ancillary facilities is a direct result of past Nelson County government intervention by issuing Industrial Revenue Bonds.

The common sense conservative approach would be to suspend IRB incentives on future distillery projects and allow the organic free market to take its course. Creating additional regulations quite frankly remove the very property rights most Republicans/Conservatives clamor for.

The utter disappointment I felt when the only magistrate recognizing this was the lone Democrat on Nelson Fiscal Court.

Why is the simplest most common-sense approach of restricting IRB incentives not at the forefront of a means to your goal? Why set a disturbing precedent of adding additional regulation and property right restrictions — that run counter to the very core of what conservatives believe in.

The incalculable harm passing and proceeding with the plan proposed by Judge-Executive Tim Hutchins to the county’s business reputation will have a long-term deleterious effect on the business environment in our county.

I can’t help but wonder if Judge Hutchins’ desire not to have warehouses across from his home isn’t the driving factor here. My sources have informed me that the recent death of one of Hutchins’ neighbors with a large 60-acre parcel, adjacent to a 112-acre parcel, may be why Hutchins is turning his back on two key campaign promises. The first is for less regulation/zoning interference; the second was to do as I am proposing and that is to restrict IRB incentives to achieve the same goal.

Friday’s special meeting also saw another broken campaign promise in regard to public comments. Tuesday’s special-called meeting had public comments on the agenda, but were missing from the agenda for Friday’s meeting. This creates unbridled discretion in point-of-view comments in a forum you control. If public comments are important to you, and you wish to eliminate Hutchins’ unbridled discretion, you have the ability to pass an ordinance requiring the Judge to include public comments on the agenda of a special meeting.

Another issue regarding public comments is their placement on the agenda. I urge you to please place public comments at the beginning of meetings. If citizens want to come speak about a vote you are going to take during that meeting — the utter disappointment of only being able to speak about it after the court has voted is distressing to the heart of the intention of the comment section.

I implore you to please reconsider the path you are being led down. A lot of people are counting on the first Republican-led Nelson County Fiscal Court to be a shining example. I for one still believe in you and I’m hopeful there will be a course correction soon.

Thank you very much for considering my thoughts!

Don Thrasher
High Grove

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