New Town Hall location in the works

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Community Center will function in current locale

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  • Members of the Farmerville Town Council meets to discuss purchase of new building and other items Monday.Gazette photo by Byron Avery
    Members of the Farmerville Town Council meets to discuss purchase of new building and other items Monday.Gazette photo by Byron Avery
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Members of the Farmerville Town Council voted Monday to adopt a resolution to purchase the former Marion State Bank building on Hwy. 2 to be used as a new Town Hall.

The building’s purchase price is $200,000, well below what many believe the appraised value will be. Purchase will be made from the Marion Investment Corporation once the appraisal and inspections are complete.

“We’ve been looking at this for nearly 10 years,” Farmerville Mayor Stein Baughman, Jr. said. “This isn’t something we just decided overnight. We’re excited about the opportunity to make this change that we feel will benefit the citizens of Farmerville.”

Part of Resolution 09-20 states “with the condition and understanding that Marion Investment Corp. will restore the drive thru service window to its former operation status, and subject to clearance of all necessary inspection of the structure, air and heat units, plumbing use and all other necessary amenities needed for its intended use,…”

During the COVID-19 pandemic it became clear that the town utilities department and other areas of the town’s services needed a way to be face to face with customers once Town Hall had to shut its doors to the public. The drive thru window will allow customers to pay bills and communicate with the appropriate town employee for their situation.

“The deciding factor was definitely the drive-thru, said Baughman. “It’s just not feasible to tear out the front of our current building to have a drive-thru coming off of main street.”

All of the offices will move to the location, but council meetings will still take place at the current location. The payment counters where employees currently interact with citizens will be removed and the flooring will be replaced, which is a project that was already in the works.

The plan is then to use the current Town Hall as a Community Center. Farmerville citizens could use the center at no charge, but would have to take care of any post-event cleaning. Those using the center would have access to the kitchen and the back bathrooms.