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Planning meeting to discuss solar farm canceled because of alleged open meetings violation, improper agenda

Thursday’s meeting to discuss a large-scale solar industry ordinance was canceled abruptly before it began amid allegations of open meeting violations and an improper agenda.
The members of the Winchester-Clark County Planning Commission voted to cancel the meeting on the advice of their attorney William Dykeman. A new meeting date was announced.
“Today there were allegations made of procedural error, namely a violation of the open meeting act,” Dykeman said. “This meeting as alleged is not lawfully permissible for a public hearing because of a violation of the open meeting act.”
Dykeman said if the meeting proceeded, any action could be overturned by a legal challenge.
Brian Thomas, an attorney involved in the proceeding, said the agenda for the special meeting did not list public comment.
“I’m as disappointed as you,” Thomas told those gathered at Central Baptist Church. “If we’re going to do it, let’s do it the right way.”
Commission member Dwain Wheeler made the motion to cancel the meeting and echoed Thomas’ comment.
“Let’s do it the right way despite how long it has taken,” Wheeler said. “It’s not a legal meeting because of an impropriety.”
The story is developing and will be updated as information becomes available.

About Fred Petke

Fred Petke is a reporter for The Winchester Sun. His beats include cops, courts, fire, public records, city and county government and other news. To contact Fred, email fred.petke@winchestersun.com or call 859-759-0051.

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