Letter: Rehab the municipal building

Rehab the municipal building

Editor of the Reformer:

I agree that the town could probably run an effective police department from Black Mountain Road. However, there is one enormous problem with that idea and that is what do we do with the municipal center? As is stands now, there are many problems with the building making it close to being shut-down by state officials. If the town does not correct the deficiencies, the building will be uninhabitable, unmarketable and virtually worthless. Why not fix it up so it can continue to house the police and town offices for the future? Why should the town relocate and rehab another building when it is already responsible for fixing the one we have?

I agree with Bob Stevens in his letter of Dec. 7 and Steve Lloyd in his Dec. 10 letter that we should fix what we have and not purchase another building in an inconvenient location with associated rehab costs, ongoing maintenance and loss of tax revenue.

My family is associated with a downtown property, which has been entirely renovated and updated to modern fire-code and safety standards. I can proudly say that the building is entering its 99th year of service to commercial and residential tenants, contributing significantly to the Brattleboro tax base, and enhancing the economic and social vitality of the downtown business district. That kind of renovation is exactly what should be done with the Municipal Center.

The Selectboard should take a cost effective approach to fixing what we have and abandon any other plan. Properly presented, this time it might succeed with passage by Town Meeting and endorsement from a majority of the citizens of Brattleboro.

Hugh W. Barber, Brattleboro, Dec. 28


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