Two businesses have their tax abatements approved, but some on the Harrison County Council don't want how it happened to repeat.

J.C. Moag Co., which is locating to the Lanesville interchange of Interstate 64, and Fred Smith Store Fixtures near Frenchtown, are both investing in equipment and buildings, which will also expand the number of jobs needed.

Four members of the Harrison County Council approved the business' tax abatement, with the Harrison County Economic Development Corp. recommending the abatement.

Two councilmembers, Jennie Capelle and Holli Castetter, were absent from Monday night's meeting.

Councilman Gary Byrne was the lone member to vote against it. He said state offices recommend applications for tax abatement get turned in before a business begins taking steps on their investments.

"Why don't we go by the recommendations?" Byrne asked the HCEDC staff.

J.C. Moag has seven acres north of Lanesville where the company is spending $5.5 million in the construction of a facility and another $6.5 million on equipment. Work on the site has already begun.

Tom Fields, the HCEDC director of communications and business expansion, said they didn't believe the timing was appropriate before, following designating the land as an economic revitalization area and during discussions of constructing a road, known as Research Boulevard.

Byrne said if construction has begun, the request is no longer an abatement, which is an incentive to get a business to come to the county.

"It's not an incentive because they're already here," Byrne said, adding it bothers him it can't get done beforehand.

Councilman Kyle Nix said he supported the abatement but would never do so again unless the request comes before construction begins.

"For the remaining time that I'm on the council, I will not be voting in support of another abatement after the ground has been broke," Nix said. "I wanted to say that publicly."

Byrne said he's not even sure why Moag would commit to moving from Jeffersonville to Lanesville while not knowing whether the abatement would get approval.

Darrell Voelker, the executive director at the HCEDC, said they could have done it the recommended way.

Fred Smith's work calls for a $2.2 million investment in equipment with $1.1 million in building improvements.

The five councilmembers present voted unanimously to approve the Smith Store Fixtures' tax abatement, also recommended by the HCEDC.