By Lasca Randels
SILVER LAKE — It appears the debate over what to do about the old Silver Lake school building is over — and the vacant building is coming down.
Town Council members spoke with Shannon McLeod, administrator for Priority Project Resources, Inc., Greensburg, who acts as the town’s grant writer, about state money that could be sought for demolition.
McLeod presented two grant options. The first is a planning grant which would cover the cost of a structural analysis of the building that would help determine if all or part of the building could be saved or instead torn down.
The second grant could be used toward the cost of demolition.
Town Council agreed Wednesday, May 13, to go with the second option.
McLeod said the town could receive up to $500,000 in funding for demolition and would be required to provide at least a 10 percent match.
Once the building is razed, McLeod said, the town could pay to have preliminary plans drawn up for a community center — and then apply in 2022 for another $500,000 grant to build the community center.
This option brings more grant money to the table, McLeod said, but also adds a year to the completion of the community center — which wouldn’t be ready until the end of 2023.
In other matters, Clerk-treasurer Tonya Conley announced that town office hours will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday until July. The town office is open to in-person business. Starting after the 4th of July holiday, the office will return to regular hours of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday. Extended hours are offered the second Wednesday of every month when the office is open until 6 p.m.
Conley asked council members if they would be interested in using the Tax Refund Exchange and Compliance System to collect unpaid water utility bills or ordinance violation fines.
TRECS allows government agencies to collect unpaid bills or fines through pending state personal income tax refunds. This will be discussed again at the council’s June meeting.
In other matters:
- A moment of silence was held for former Silver Lake council member Phil Shalley, who passed away unexpectedly May 13 at the age of 73.
- A resolution was passed that will authorize the lease of property at 605 E. Sycamore Street. The town will be taking requests for proposals for the lease of land in the near future.
- A contract with Stafford was renewed.
- Ordinance codification was tabled.
- The next regular meeting will be at 7 p.m. June 10. The location will be announced at a later date.