The Warren County commissioners are willing to build a parking lot on federal property.
They are not, however, willing to pay rent to use the parking lot they pay to build.
The commissioners approved a bid Wednesday for a parking lot project in Youngsville. The lot would serve the district justice's office. Since the closure of the former office building on Railroad Street, the county has been renting space next door in the Youngsville Post Office building.
Commissioners plan paving
at Youngsville justice office
According to Commissioner John Eggleston, that contract has saved the county money. "We moved in with the opportunity to save a fortune."
However, he didn't notice in his examination of the contract that parking was not included. "I just missed it," Eggleston said.
So, those who have reason to spend time at the district justice office have been parking next to the old building and walking over to the post office location.
That creates a problem with moving the building. "We haven't been able to do anything with it because we've been using the parking lot," Eggleston said.
The commissioners would rather not create a parking lot that will not belong to the county. "We're looking at spending $17,000 to $18,000 and it's not going to be owned by the county," Commissioner Stephen Vanco said.
Initially, the county was told it would have to rent space in the lot, even if it paid for the creation of the lot. Eggleston said that requirement has been eliminated through negotiations.
Moving back to the old office is not a reasonable option. "The previous location needed a lot of work," Commissioner John Bortz said. "We could spent $18,000 on the building" and it would still not be usable.
Eggleston estimated $50,000 to $60,000 "to make that building energy efficient and correct everything that's wrong with it."
"There aren't any really, really good options facing us," he said. "I think this is the best one we've got."
The commissioners unanimously awarded the bids for the paving job to Kingsview Paving for $13,500 and for engineering and oversight to Stiffler McGraw for $4,000.
"Whereas... a woman is abused every 18 seconds... women, men and children deserve safe, healthy relationships..." the commissioners declared October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
"It's a tragedy when people's emotions run to the point where they are willing to do injury to each other," Eggleston said. "If it makes one person understand that beating up on each other isn't the way to go it's worth it."