09/18/07 — Pikeville looking for help with new town hall work

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Pikeville looking for help with new town hall work

By Nick Hiltunen
Published in News on September 18, 2007 1:58 PM

PIKEVILLE -- The Pikeville Board of Commissioners is ready to settle on a new town hall location -- as long as board members can find somebody to help pay for it.

The old BB&T building on Main Street will serve as a town hall if commissioners can find partial grant funding, Mayor Herbert Seiger said.

"Provided we could redo it at a cost the town could afford, now we will go forward with a contract to get the cost estimated," Sieger said.

Two issues contractors would tackle at the town hall would be mold remediation and rotten flooring, officials have said.

Town resident Yvonne Smith gave Pikeville the old BB&T branch building on Main Street after it was vacated by the Winston-Salem-based BB&T chain.

Town officials accepted it over the objections of Commissioners Edith McLenny and Johnny Weaver.

The two said they worried about a mold problem there and wanted to perform a cost analysis before taking the building.

McLenny still think the location is poor for a town hall because of traffic and business deliveries.

But she says the town has the obligation to fix the building now that it's been accepted.

"We're going to have to do something with it," McLenny said. "I don't think anything is etched in stone -- we're going to get a local contract to do an assessment of what needs to be done."

Weaver echoed McLenny's sentiments about the town's obligation to fix the building -- and if grant funding comes along, he says he wouldn't object.

"If it would cost $50,000 to fix it, and we could receive $35,000, then we would be kind of foolish not to do it," Weaver said.

But Weaver also thinks the grant application will be more complicated than just a town hall proposal.

To get downtown development funding, Weaver thinks those groups will look for a wide-ranging plan of downtown development including a new town hall, he said.

"You can't just say that you want a town hall and they give us some money for downtown development," Weaver said.

Weaver said his support hinges on grant funding.

The mayor thought might come from working with the Wayne County Development Alliance, Community Development Block Grants, the U.S. Department of Agriculture or the N.C. Department of Transportation.

"If it comes back that we can definitely not get a grant, then we definitely cannot do it," Weaver said. "We can live with what we have."