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(A) Purpose of Commission. The county shall form the AEC which shall be obligated to conduct hearings, investigations and any and all other activities which the AEC deems necessary to implement the legislative intent of this chapter.
(B) Members; appointments; term of service. The AEC shall consist of seven members which shall be appointed by the County Commissioners and the County Council. The members shall serve at the will of the appointing bodies.
(1) County Commissioner appointments. The County Commissioners shall appoint four persons to serve upon the AEC. Each shall be a resident of the county. At least one shall be a member of the Clergy or a minister. At least one shall be a member of the Democratic party. At lease one shall be a member of the Republican party. At least one of the County Commissioners’ appointments shall be a female. Each shall serve for a period of one year from the date of their appointment or until the County Commissioners determine otherwise.
(2) County Council appointments. The County Council shall appoint three persons to serve upon the AEC. Each shall be a resident of the county. At least one shall be a member of the Southern Indiana Chamber of Commerce. At least one shall be a member of the Democratic Party. At least one shall be a member of the Republican Party. At least one of the County Council’s appointments shall be a female.
(3) Compensation. Each member of the AEC shall be paid $50 for each meeting or hearing which they are required to attend. These payments shall be made from those monies paid by the applicants in the form of application fees. The members of the AEC shall not be entitled to payment if no application funds are available.
(C) Powers of the Commission. The Commission shall have all of those powers specifically enumerated by this chapter as well as any additional powers which it determines necessary to comply with this chapter. These powers include, but are not limited to:
(1) Subpoena. The power to issue subpoenas requesting documents or requiring the presence of witnesses to appear before the Commission;
(2) Legal counsel. The Commission has the authority to hire legal counsel to assist in conducting its investigations or hearings upon those applications submitted; however, the funds to pay for legal counsel shall be paid solely and exclusively from those application fees. If there are no fees available, the Commission shall be prohibited from hiring counsel;
(3) Conduct of hearings. The Commission shall be permitted to conduct public hearings upon each application. They shall be permitted to question witnesses as well as question the applicant and cross-examine the applicant’s witnesses. Moreover, the Commission is permitted to present witnesses on its own behalf. Further, upon the close of presentation of witnesses by the applicant and the Commission, members of the public shall be permitted to testify. Upon the conclusion of such hearings the Commission shall issue its findings of facts and decision within 30 days. The decision and findings shall be delivered by certified mail to the applicant’s address as provided upon said application. The Commission shall also provide its decision and findings to the County Commissioners and the County Council; and
(4) Additional powers. The Commission shall be granted any and all other powers which the County Commissioners shall deem appropriate and as adopted as amendments to this chapter.
(Ord. 6-2001, passed 7-5-2001)