SOPA deals with vacancies

By Nikki Blankenship -

During Thursday’s meeting of the Southern Ohio Port Authority (SOPA), the group underwent a reorganization.

When going over the minutes, acting Chair Tim Chamberlain announced that donations have been returned or transferred as requested by donors including funds donated by Southern Ohio Medical Center (SOMC) and Tim Glockner.

Chamberlain announced that he will be resigning from the board and his position as secretary and treasurer. However, he asked to remain as assistant treasurer until completion of an in-depth state audit done at his request.

There may be hang up in that process with board members voting to resend a vote to return City properties to Portsmouth. Chamberlain explained that these properties were placed with SOPA by the City and that the City would like them transferred back once the City’s economic development program is running. If those properties remain with SOPA, Chamberlain explained that will change the organization’s financials, which will create a problem for the State Auditor’s Office. Still, the board chose not to transfer those properties back at this time.

Board member Steve Sturgill announced that though he is leaving the board, SOPA would still be welcomed to use the meeting space, which is owned by Community Action Organization (CAO) of which he is the director.

In the reorganizing of the board, New Boston Councilman Mike Payton was named the new Chair with board member Rodney Barnett named Vice Chair. With all the recent resignations, the board was reduced to approximately half of what it was. Only 11 members were present at the meeting.

By Nikki Blankenship

Reach Nikki Blankenship at 740-353-3101 ext. 1931.

Reach Nikki Blankenship at 740-353-3101 ext. 1931.