PRESCOTT – Not surprisingly the Prescott Hardware building was discussed during Monday night’s meeting of the Prescott City Council.
Prescott Mayor Terry Oliver said the city has received four calls concerning the demolition of the building, but so far has gotten no bids. Bids are supposed to be opened Wednesday, Aug. 20.
Meredith DeWoody was at the meeting and was asked about the situation. She told the council she’d talked to a couple of councilmen but her research didn’t come to any fruition where the store was concerned. Information was gathered on the report of the building’s structural integrity and, she said, Oliver asked her to call John Greer, who did the report last year. Greer reportedly agreed to come to Prescott ad discuss the situation for a fee of $2,000. However, when DeWoody told Oliver this, she was told to call him back and let him know his services wouldn’t be needed.
DeWoody said the local historical group was interested in looking at another approach, but has no idea where to go with the current situation. She said there were people interested in donating time and money to save the hardware part of the structure, but not the warehouse, which has pretty much collapsed. She said their idea was to save the hardware store and demolish the warehouse and get bids on securing the roof. “I know it would be an expense and require fundraising, but it could be less than what the cost of bringing the building down is. We want to save it as a historic building. It’s a part of the downtown area and we could lose our historic distinction. It’s important to the community.”
Councilman Wava Fitzhugh said nothing could be done at this time because the city doesn’t own the building.
DeWoody agreed saying it doesn’t make sense to put money into the building when it’s owned by someone else. Even when the building is removed, she said, the property will still be owned by Al Souza of California.
She told the council she’d talked with Souza three times before the building was condemned. Initially, she said, he appeared to be interested in trying to save the property. However, she added, he hasn’t returned any calls since the condemnation process started. “I don’t know where he stands on it.”
In other business, Mary Godwin, executive director of the Prescott-Nevada County Economic Development Office, reminded the panel the county fair is the second week in September.
She informed the group the tax collection was up $5,000 compared to last July, crediting it to the sales tax for the jail.
Turning to the topic of the hatchery, Godwin said the company has had two successful batches hatched and both have been sent out. Two people were hired from Prescott, but only one showed for work. At this time, she added, the company is looking for one full-time worker and one part-timer. She said names are being taken at the EDO, and the position pays $12.75 an hour.
On the topic of Potlatch she said the removal of the items is nearing completion, with two vendors remaining. One should be finished in a few weeks, while it will take the other until October to remove the items purchased.
Oliver told the council Josh Plunkett, a former member of the Prescott Fire Department has changed jobs and resigned his position. He recommended replacing Plunkett with Ben Jones, a former member of the PFD and current meter reader for the city. The council agreed.
The council also entered into an interlocal agreement with the Prescott School District for a School Resource Officer, a position currently held by David Stovall who will remain in the job.