OAG 93-11

February 10, 1993

Mr. Ken Hart

Executive Director

Kentucky Coal County Coalition, Inc.

400 Kings Daughters Drive

Frankfort, Kentucky 40601

Re: County Economic Development Authorities.

AGO Corr. No. 93-(O)-43.

Dear Mr. Hart:

By letter of January 8, 1992 you indicate, in substance, that members of your coalition want to know if a fiscal court has final approval authority regarding an economic development project that has been recommended by a county economic development authority.

While we cannot provide an answer to your question that would be clearly applicable to every fact situation, the general rule, in our view, is that a fiscal court does not have final approval authority regarding an economic development project recommended by a local industrial development authority. Discussion follows.

Statutes now numbered as KRS 154.50-301 to 154.50-346 provide for the creation, operation, and functions of entities known as local industrial development authorities. In particular, KRS 154.50-316 provides:

(1) Any governmental unit by act of its legislative body may establish a nonprofit industrial development authority to be composed of six (6) members.

(2) The authority shall be a body politic and corporate with the usual corporate attributes, and in its corporate name may sue and be sued, contract and be contracted with and do all things reasonable or necessary to effectively carry out the duties prescribed by KRS 154.50-301 to 154.50-346.

The above language, in providing that an industrial development authority shall be a "body politic and corporate," with the "usual corporate attributes," envisions an autonomous body, with its own powers.

KRS 154.50-316 establishes the relationship between a local industrial development authority and a local legislative body such as a fiscal court. Typically any review authority vested in the creating legislative body would be codified in such statute. KRS 154.50-316, however, does not provide for the creating legislative body to review actions of the unit it creates. We are not aware of any other statutory provisions that so provide. Further, such authority would be inconsistent with the intent of the statutes here involved. See Opinion of the Attorney General (OAG) 74-864, copy enclosed.

For the reasons indicated, we believe that a fiscal court does not have general final approval authority regarding projects recommended by a local industrial development authority.

A given project, because of circumstances impinging upon a county, might need fiscal court approval for those matters affecting the county. As far as general final approval authority of a fiscal court over recommendations of a local industrial development authority, we see none.




Gerard R. Gerhard

Assistant Attorney General

(502) 564-7600