County preps for sale of business park sites, seeks walking corridor grant

by Kate Shunney

Morgan County Economic Development Authority (EDA) director Lyn Goodwin has asked county officials to prepare for the sale of two lots in the U.S. 522 Business Park by conveying the deed for those lots to the EDA.

Neither of the lots —  Lots #8 & 9 — have ever been sold, so the deed is still in the county’s name, said Goodwin.

Commissioner Sean Forney recused himself from the discussion and motion on the request, saying later that he had familiarity with the business venture, but has no financial interest in it.

Commissioners Bill Clark and Joel Tuttle agreed to allow Goodwin to move forward in preparing for the closing, expected in the next several weeks. No public official said what business would be buying the lots.

Walking corridor to Food Lion?

In other business, commissioners decided to seek a grant from the Transportation Alternatives Grant program to study the possibility of aligning a walking path with existing U.S. 522 between the Morgan Square shopping center and the area of Greenway cemetery.

Commissioner Clark said the grant would require a 20% match.

“Would you be willing to put up some matching funds?” he asked.

Commissioner Tuttle said he would.

“It is dangerous as heck to walk along 522,” he said.

Tuttle said once the bypass is finished, much of the heavy truck traffic will be off U.S. 522.

“It’s the ideal time to consider it,” he said.

Clark said his preliminary estimate was the county could spend $24,000 toward the cost of the study and design work for a pedestrian corridor.

Commissioners voted unanimously to apply for the grant.