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Anticipation growing for Community Center project

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Ed Nevins
STAUNTON -- The town council of Staunton is less than two weeks away from its March meeting but the anticipation is gearing up.

The town has moved its monthly meeting from the second Monday in March to Tuesday, March 10, to coincide with a public hearing for town residents to express views on the town's proposed Community Center project.

For two years, the town council has attempted to attain an Indiana Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) in order to secure funds for the center.

Last year, Staunton was turned down for the grant.

However, the town is preparing to turn in another grant proposal soon.

In fact, grant writer Shannon McLeod of Priority Project Resources intends to have a grant proposal ready to send to the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs a few days following the March meeting.

Since being turned down for a grant last year, the town council has worked diligently to change its current proposal.

Council member Ed Nevins told The Brazil Times the original grant proposal was close to $750,000.

However, the current proposal calls for $406,900.

"From the time we started (the process), until we cut this down, the federal government had made a law of a building code if you had more than a set number of people (in the building), you had to have a sprinkler system," Nevins said. "That was going to raise the price."

Nevins said a sprinkler system for the center would cost an additional $80,000.

"We decided we couldn't afford that," he said.

Nevins added the size of the building has changed significantly, adding further to the reduction in cost.

"The biggest thing was the size of the building and some of the material," Nevins said. "The types of material we were going to use."

Current plans call for the building to be composed of brick, which Nevins said could be purchased locally, something the council stressed it wanted to do.

One other item Nevins said town residents seemed interested in was the actual front of the building.

At the town's February meeting, Sanders Associates, Inc., representative Dan Sanders met with the board, providing it with a revised floor plan of the center.

Sanders Associates, Inc., based in Terre Haute, is currently drawing up blue prints for the project.

One plan Sanders offered at the February meeting was constructing the front of the building to look like the old Staunton High School.

"We didn't plan it," Nevins said. "(Sanders) just put that in there. People kind of liked the idea."

Nevins added residents he has spoke with have said they were in favor of the community center.

He said construction plans for the project have to be turned in to the state along with the grant proposal. However, construction plans may be modified, but the cost of the project may not.

The proposed community center will be located at 101 N. Monroe St., Staunton.

The Tuesday, March 10, council meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.

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How about repairing/repaving some streets in Staunton other than those that board members live on??????????????????????????????

-- Posted by aminor on Thu, Feb 26, 2009, at 8:09 AM

Maintenance? What? That never got anybody elected. Aminor, there must be something wrong with you! (sarcasm is so original, don't you think?)

I'm as excited as anyone about the new civic center they are considering, however, it does seem like there are better places to spend the money. But! Consider this: government money is often specific. You may get money to pay off your mortgage from Mr. Obama but what you really need is an operation to fix your knee.

I think the phrase "take what you can get" applies here.

But, like Aminor, we should never stop complaining about what is wrong. Keep up the pressure. Remember: They Work For *US*. ...and in this case *THEY* should be fired for not doing their job. Staunton streets are bad to REALLY bad in some places. Fire them! If they don't fix the streets, vote them out next time. If you don't, stop your whining!

Somebody tell me which streets are the worst and I'll do an expose' of them and see if that helps.



-- Posted by TheRider on Thu, Feb 26, 2009, at 9:47 AM

It's my understanding that the size of the building has been reduced and will not accommodate the Staunton High School Annual Alumni Banquet. I'm very disappointed to hear that.

-- Posted by Lori74SHS on Mon, Mar 2, 2009, at 11:30 AM

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