Tourism moves forward

Floyd tourism commission members discuss topics on the agenda during a June 27 meeting. The group meets at 5 p.m. on the fourth Thursday of each month in the fiscal courtroom. 

The Floyd County Recreation, Tourist and Convention Commission reported progress on a project that would provide a river access off of U.S. 23 in Floyd County last week. 

The commission has discussed the possibility of developing a new river access for more than a year, and officials have been working for several months with a private landowner who owns property that the commission hopes to purchase or lease. Treasurer David Tackett said the property encompasses about an acre near the Levisa Fork of the Big Sandy River, and it’s located just off of U.S. 23 between Allen and Banner. He would not disclose the name of the property owner, as the transaction is pending.  

In April, the commission gave Tackett the authority to spend up to $10,000 to get a survey, design and appraisal needed on the property. On Thursday, June 27, he updated commission members about that work. 

He reported the commission paid Bocook Engineering $2,240 for the survey and engineering work required on the property and he said a local appraiser donated an appraisal at no charge to the commission. The property has been appraised at $4,250, he said. 

He said the appraiser will reach out to the property owner to see if he/she will agree to sell it. 

“It’s up to them now to say, ‘We’ll take this,’ or ‘We’ll donate it,’ or whatever they want to do for us on that,” Tackett said. “I will say that the appraiser donated his work to us so we don’t have to pay him.” 

He said if the deal is finalized, the property will be transferred to the Floyd County Fiscal Court. He said the property owner has requested that the area be fenced off if it is used as a boat access on the river. 

“The fencing would be the last thing that’d we do,” Tackett said. “So, anyway, we’re further than we were. And, believe it or not, you wouldn’t believe the people that have asked me when we’re going to get this thing done.”

The commission approved $80,000 for the river access project in its 2019-2020 budget. 

With all members present, the commission approved numerous items during the meeting, including:

•Approved the financial report, showing total funds of $208,600. 

•Spending $5,225 to buy three billboards to advertise the golf course at Allen and $2,500 to pay for fencing that’s been installed there.  

•Spending $5,200 to pay for a stage that was built at the park at Minnie.

•Spending $5,000 for the fiscal court to map ATV trail routes in the county.

•Spending $50 for photography by Allen Bolling, $1,000 for an advertising partnership with Prestonsburg Tourism at the Appalachian Wireless Arena in Pikeville and $300 for a new pop-up display banner, reporting the one purchased last fall is broken.

•Spending $2,800 for two full page ads in Kentucky Waterways and spending $1,000 for memberships with two tourism agencies, Eastern Highlands North Tourism Region and the Kentucky Travel Industry Association.  

•Spending $1,000 to sponsor Floyd County tourism’s participation with other local tourism agencies in the Kentucky State Fair this year. 

•Providing a grant of $5,000 to the Mountain Arts Center. The MAC requested a $10,000 grant earlier this year. 

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