Redevelopment Commission Selects New PR Firm

(posted Sept 22)

Speedway Redevelopment Commission has now hired its third public relation firm since 2006. The commission approved the Hirons & Company contract with a 4-0-1 vote at its September 15 meeting. The commission's action also back dated the contract to become effective September 1.

Commissioner Steve Bishop abstained from the vote since his request to delay action to a special session was overridden by the other commissioners. President Vince Noblet did not want to delay because of the urgency to get a lot of information out to the public. Bishop requested a postponement to give him adequate time to review the proposals. He said that it may have been his fault for not pushing to get the information for review. The commission was willing to allow him to vote based on a contingency approval, but that discussion never materialized into action.

Commissioner Benny Grove believed they were hiring a top notch firm that has experience with working with redevelopment commissions across the state. Hirons & Company Executive Assistant Kayla Biggerstaff said her firm is now working on the Carmel Redevelopment Project.

Redevelopment Commission Executive Director Scott Harris said the commission interviews were conducted in an "individual session" when Navigator asked when the interviews transpired since notice was not given to the media. The Navigator also asked if Biggerstaff's participation in the Charette was part of the interview process. Harris said that it was not to his "knowledge" that it was part of the interviewing process. He said Biggerstaff resides in town and is concerned with the town's future.

Commissioner Bill Jones said the commission needs to improve on its "internal communication."