In a 3-2 vote, the council authorized Mayor
An April inspection found lead-based paint but no asbestos there.
"We're looking at putting less affluent, predominantly minority kids into a facility that we moved firefighters out of," Jackson said. "If nothing else, the optics aren't good." For a city that's trying to attract more people to move here, he said, "those optics aren't good at all."
"I think we should be careful (about) pulling the trigger too fast on this issue," Kirby said.
"I'm not saying it's not a good thing" to lease the building to the organization, Kirby said. "I think it can be a good thing. I just think it's premature."
Jackson said council members should have focused on protecting the children.
"It's our responsibility as legislators in the city to speak for those people who don't have a voice," Jackson said. "And those children don't necessarily have a voice."
"It's not a rush decision," she said.
"We're not rushing into this," Marks said. If the organization breaches the contract, "we would take appropriate action," he said.
According to the lease agreement, the organization must make a number of improvements: replacing or repairing doors, installing new decorative awning with braces over the front garage doors, renovating a bathroom, repairing the roof, painting all areas and installing wainscoting on the lower half of the open area, replacing the HVAC unit, installing a kitchen, painting concrete flooring and replacing the rest with laminate, replacing 12 windows and repairing the rest, replacing glass panes or garage doors so that they match, pressure washing the building and driveway, landscaping the property and installing vinyl siding on the eaves.
The lease agreement requires the organization to maintain a general policy of liability insurance that covers the property and names the city and its officials as additional insureds in an amount not less than
Jackson has called for the fire station to be demolished. The city closed the station in 2008 and built a new Station 4 next door on
"We can't definitely say we have no future use for that building," Jackson said. "I would ask the council to at least look at it, consider the fact that we are putting kids possibly in harm's way. I would ask that we look at the situation thoroughly."
Wynn said in the meeting that
"In everything we do, safety is priority No. 1."
After the meeting, Wynn said he doesn't have an estimate on what the renovations would cost since he doesn't yet have access to the building.
The fire station building is adjacent to the
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