HUBBARD A third police station option

Concern centers on how to pay for a new station.
HUBBARD -- City council is now discussing a third alternative in efforts to get new police headquarters -- buying a building.
Lawmakers have long talked of constructing a new station or remodeling the facility.
Councilman Richard Keenan, D-4th, chairman of council's safety committee, told fellow lawmakers during a Monday caucus session that he has looked at the former Carano's IGA grocery store on East Liberty Street as a possible alternative.
"It's something we should at least look at," Keenan said.
Cost: Councilwoman Bonnie Viele, D-1st, said remodeling would cost about $60 per square foot. This, plus the purchase price, would bring the cost to about $750,000.
The city has received a $1.1 million low-interest loan through the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Community Facilities Grant/Loan Program, as well as a $20,000 grant.
The city administration and council have discussed for some time whether to use the loan to build a new facility or renovate the building, which was constructed in the mid-1800s.
While some city officials want to construct a building, others favor renovation to preserve the historical value.
Viele said the Carano building is barrier-free with no basement, and because it's on a hill, provides a good location to broadcast police business.
It was also pointed out the building is not downtown where there's traffic; thus, police cars can get on the road faster.
Concern: Councilman William Williams, D-at large, not only expressed concern about how to pay for the project, but also that council has wavered between new construction and renovation.
"We've just gone from one to the other," Williams said.
Williams said the city can afford about $600,000 for the project, noting that the lack of increased revenue from the income tax will result in the city's having to find the money in the budget or come up with a way of generating revenue.
Generators: In other business, Council President John Darko reported the city will have to find a new site to locate three large electric generators purchased by the city.
The city had selected an area at the waste treatment plant on Mill Street in Hubbard Township.
Darko explained that tests show the land won't support the weight of the generators and a new site must be found.

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