Bray: Company acquires building for bitcoin mining | News

Paducah Mayor George Bray voiced his excitement Tuesday that a U.S.-based company has acquired the former AmerisourceBergen building, which will focus on cryptocurrency.

“We’re all excited here at the commission to see movement and new life in the former AmerisourceBergen building, where I spent my 40-year career,” he said, during Tuesday night’s Paducah City Commission meeting. “The building has been acquired by a company called Griffin Blockchain Services, and there will be a bitcoin mining operation in there.”

The building at 322 North Third St. has been vacant for some time. The AmerisourceBergen facility in Paducah closed several years ago, and GenCanna later planned to use the building for a different facility, but that didn’t come to pass. The building was sold to an investment group in 2020.

“Anybody that doesn’t understand cryptocurrency or bitcoin mining would have to get in line behind me because I don’t fully understand it either, but I know that that industry is growing,” Bray said.

“That is the second company that has made an acquisition — a building or built a building — here in Paducah. I’m familiar with this building. It’s a 120,000 square-foot building. It’s a very large building, and I just point out that this was a private property transaction and closed on November 12th.”

Bray said the company has already joined the chamber of commerce and it wants to make a “long-term commitment” to Paducah.

He also indicated that people are already in the city, and have begun making improvements in the building. The company plans to release more information next week after the Thanksgiving holiday, Bray said.

“It’s very exciting to have a new industry. Although, I’ll be the first to admit most of us don’t really understand cryptocurrency or cryptocurrency mining, but it’s an industry that’s been growing, and it continues to grow,” Bray reiterated to The Sun, after the meeting.

“Kentucky has been identified as a state that’s attractive for cryptocurrency companies to locate in or relocate to, so it’s exciting to have a new technology-based industry locate in our hometown.”

He also noted that it’s normal for people to wonder about cryptocurrency.

“That’s a very normal reaction. People don’t understand it. They wonder ‘Who are these folks coming in?’ and I would just say that the city of Paducah has been at the forefront of vetting this company, and these investors, and doing our best to understand what’s getting ready to take place,” he added.

The entire commission meeting can be watched online through the city’s YouTube channel, paducahkygov, and a meeting summary is also available on the city’s website. The next regular meeting is scheduled for Dec. 14.

• Bray took a moment to reflect on former Paducah Mayor Gerry Montgomery and her contributions to the community. She died last week at age 83. She served two terms as mayor and then served two terms as a city commissioner.

• Bray presented Paducah Main Street Director Katie Axt with a proclamation to recognize Nov. 27 as Small Business Saturday. Susan Edwards, owner of Wildhair Studios’ Rock Shop, talked about the importance of supporting local businesses and her own business experiences downtown.

• The commission approved an ordinance for a multi-year contract with Bacon Farmer Workman Engineering & Testing to perform pavement inspections on city streets using PAVER software program. The program is used to prioritize streets and determine the budget for the annual paving plan, said Pam Spencer, the city’s communications manager.

• The commission approved an ordinance to refinance the McCracken County 2011 General Obligation Bond.

The city, county, and Murray State University committed in 2011 to the issuance of $10 million in bonds for construction of the Murray State Paducah Regional Campus. The county issued the bond with the city providing part of the bond payment each year. The refinancing is expected to save the city approximately $120,000 over the next 10 years, Spencer said.

Follow Kelly Farrell on Twitter, @KellyAFarrell11

Follow Kelly Farrell on Twitter, @KellyAFarrell11