During their first regular meeting of 2009, the Mason County Commissioners' Court voted to move ahead with the purchase of the former Post Office building on the southwest corner of the square.
During discussion on the item, it was noted by Judge Jerry Bearden that McCulloch County was not fully prepared for the move of offices required by their courthouse renovation and are now scattered all around town in separate office spaces. He indicated that the building in question would be able to handle all of the county offices during the proposed renovation of the Mason courthouse if Mason is selected for the renovation grant.
Judge Bearden told the Court that he had looked all about the area trying to find suitable space, and the former Post Office, now privately owned, was the best selection. He also indicated that the price had been reduced to around $180,000, making it a very good deal for the county as well as a good long-term investment. He noted that the realtor involved had indicated that some roof work would need to be done, which should run between $9 and 12 thousand.
During the discussion on how the building might be utilized, various options were offered including storage for the clerk's records, possible law enforcement use, or simply as an annex to the courthouse.
After the unanimous vote to move ahead with the purchase, the Judge indicated he would be signing a contract and presenting earnest money to secure the offer.
The Court also discussed some needed repairs at the Mason County Jail, an issue brought more sharply in focus as a jail inspection was underway during the morning. Some of the problems that need to be addressed: a faulty back door, leaking roof, electrical anddrainage problems. The Court authorized the Sheriff to seek bids on those itmes.
Commissioner Wayne Hofmann was unanimously elected as the Judge Pro-Tem for 2009, a position he also held in 2008.
Treasurer Polly McMillan told the Court she is seeking advice from investment counselors about possible higher return investments for County funds. She noted that the current CD rates are not providing a great deal of income; but, also cautioned that the County wants to stay away from investments that incur any risk.
The next regular meeting of the Court will be on January 26th.