City council talks electric vehicle battery plant


One of the main topics of Wednesday’s Washington Court House City Council meeting was the new Honda electric vehicle battery factory that will be built at the Fayette County mega-site.

Following last Tuesday’s announcement, the new factory has been the talk of the town due to the expected creation of 2,200 jobs. Excitement filled the council chambers Wednesday evening as city manager Joe Denen brought the topic up during the meeting.

“We would very much like to compliment the Jefferson Township Trustees and the county commissioners, they have been a pleasure to work with and everyone has made an extraordinary effort in getting things going,” Denen said during the city manager’s report.

“I talked with a few people from Honda very early (Wednesday) morning. It has been an exceptional effort on everyone’s behalf, something of which I am enormously pleased and proud of. I can’t get over how well everyone worked together,” added Denen.

Dale Lynch, council member, had some acknowledgements to give out as well. “Mr. Denen spent a great deal of time working out what’s called a Joint Economic Development District with Jefferson Township and he played a big part in getting all of this done.”

Shawn Remington, local electrical contractor, attended and spoke at the meeting as well. Remington mentioned how it might be a good idea to hold something similar to a press conference for our area so people can ask any questions they may have instead of getting their information from faulty sources.

“There are various ways this could be achieved such as a town hall style meeting or having the option for people to mail their questions to the city officials,” explained Remington.

While this idea was favorable to the council, further actions cannot be taken due to officials involved still being bound by a non-disclosure agreement.

“We will have legislation regarding the factory ready by the second meeting in October,” answered Denen. “While we are still bound by the non-disclosure agreement, Mark Pitstick, city attorney, will have a suggestion about how to word a motion for an executive session so I can explain to you how the agreement with Jefferson Township and the company will work.”

“We built today together and we will build tomorrow together,” concluded Denen.

All council members were present for the first official meeting of the month of October.

The pledge was led by council member Jim Blair and the invocation was led by council member Caleb Johnson.

Rezoning property purchase by Washington High School was discussed at the meeting as well. The discussion was over rezoning the 11th and 15th Commercial Ave., from B3, General Business District to CF, Community Facilities District along with rezoning 409 Community Dr., from R3, Multiple Family District to CF, Community Facilities District.

The first two lots are planned to be the location of the new tennis courts and the other lot is to remain vacant for the time being.

The meeting concluded with comments from all of the council members that primarily dealt with sending appreciation to everyone involved with the factory project.

The second meeting of the month will be held on Oct.26 at 7:30 p.m. in the council chambers and all citizens are encouraged to attend the meeting.

By Abby Shrout

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