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DAV can't use old BoE building
Vets group loosing office this week
0823 DAV office exterior
The current DAV building is on Bagley Avenue. - photo by Photo by Denise Etheridge
During a called meeting Thursday, Dr. Scherer spoke to the Liberty County Board of Education about an option to lease its old building to the Disabled American Veterans office, but members rejected the proposal.
Scherer said Hinesville Mayor Jim Thomas asked her if the DAV office, which is currently scheduled to close Tuesday, could be temporarily relocated to the old building on Gen. Screven Way until construction is finished on the new justice center, which will be the DAV’s permanent home.
The old BoE office is vacant and without active utilities.
“I’m afraid this is going to open a can of worms,” said board member Becky Carter, who expressed concern that allowing one entity to take up residence in the old building would set a precedent for a flood of other requests. “It’s come up in the past, it’s coming up now and it will come up again.”
Chairman Lily Baker said she wouldn’t mind leasing the building as long as the party using it is held responsible for all the costs incurred during the process.
“I just don’t want there to be any burden on us,” she said.
Despite talk of creating a contract with the DAV for a short-term lease or signing a legal agreement that would make them responsible for the costs associated with using the facility, the board unanimously voted not to lease the building.
This isn’t the first time the board has decided against leasing the building. Last fall, the city of Hinesville requested to use the building for some city offices during its City Hall relocation, but the board denied approval then as well.
The DAV is currently in downtown Hinesville and, according to Garlon Penland, commander of the Disabled American Veterans Chapter 46, provides services for approximately 100-200 veterans a month.
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