The Edmonson County Fiscal Court agreed to renew Community Action of Southern KY's (CASOKY) lease for their use of the Community Center building today, although the terms will be changed and will only be temporary.
At the previous fiscal court meeting, Judge Executive Wil Cannon presented the lease to the court, which was up for renewal, however; he noted that the organization was requesting a 5-year lease that included multiple office spaces and the use of the Community Center gym and outdoor area for the Head Start Program. The monthly rent was only $215 for use of office space and the gym.
Cannon said he wasn't going to force the group out and figured a temporary agreement would work for now, but in the meantime, he wanted to make sure the organization paid their fair share of rent and utilities due to the fact that the organization wasn't a county office and received their own funding.
Today, Cannon announced that terms for a temporary lease agreement with Christopher Property Management until June 30, 2018 had been reached. Cannon said the group is the representative of CASOKY. Cannon said he and the representative looked at other possible properties, but for now, they have agreed to pay 25% of the utility bills in the Community Center building, which Cannon said CASOKY thought was very fair.
Magistrate Joe Durbin said he received a call from Head Start about the beginnings of the Community Center building and facility, which he said was constructed in 1969 through a federal grant with the help of then Congressman William Natcher and Gus and Elaine Parsley. The local health department was also housed in the building at that time. In addition, Mag. Durbin said he understood that the plan was for Head Start to operate in the building as well, and he was in favor of finding a way to keep the program there long-term.
Cannon agreed with Durbin that they should work to find a solution but he didn't feel like county taxpayers should be paying for the utilities of Head Start when they are already federally funded.
"We can't afford to house everyone," he said. "County government doesn't house programs that have their own funding. If we could afford to do this, that would be a completely different situation. That's why I believe for now, at least, they should pay 25% of the utilities in the building and that's more than fair."
Cannon said that would equal around $3500 per year.
Durbin said he agreed with that 100% and said that the organization paying their share of the utilities and maintenance was only fair.
The court voted to allow County Attorney Greg Vincent to amend the language in the temporary lease agreement in a manner in which both parties could agree.
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