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  • Last modified 134 days ago (Aug. 2, 2017)

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Groves gets no commitment

Staff writer

Like a determined suitor whose proposals are rebuffed time and again, Russell Groves’ latest proposal to Hillsboro was not accepted.

The city council told Groves two weeks ago that it would consider a commitment to the Marion County Economic Development Corporation after looking at its 2018 budget.

The budget, which got a hearing Tuesday, was tabled for further discussion at an Aug. 15 meeting.

While discussing the budget, council member Bob Watson was the lone voice in supporting the corporation.

“I guess what I’d have thought, to get it out there — I’m not getting a lot of warm feelings — I’d like to give $25,000 with one representative on the board,” Watson said.

Council member Brent Driggers disagreed, saying he struggled with the idea of Hillsboro dollars going to both city economic development and the county economic development corporation.

“I appreciate the sentiment in the amount that Bob mentioned, and we would love to have the amount,” Groves said.

Groves asked for cooperation between Hillsboro and the corporation regardless of the city’s decision on financial support.

City administrator Larry Paine reminded council members that no decisions on city budget needed to be made Tuesday.

“You can table it,” Paine said.

Watson made a motion to give the corporation $25,000 with the understanding that Hillsboro would have one representative on the board of directors, but the motion died for lack of a second.

Mayor Delores Dalke asked Groves to return for the Aug. 15 meeting.

Dalke said county commissioner Kent Becker had visited her to seek suggestions for one of three county representatives on the economic development corporation board. Dalke suggested Groves, and council members voted unanimously to recommend him for the board seat.

The county has pledged $825,000 to the corporation over five years. Marion has pledged $222,500 over five years. Peabody made a one-year $25,000 and will revisit the question of giving more money next year.

The county will have three seats on the board, and Marion and Peabody will each have two seats on the board.

In other matters, council members approved a priority list for future water projects so Paine could seek financing for the work. They also set an Oct. 3 hearing for owners of 311 S. Eisenhower St. to show why the property should not be condemned.

Last modified Aug. 2, 2017

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