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Mason County Awarded THC Emergency Grant Funds
Wednesday, February 1, 2012 • Posted February 1, 2012

The Texas Historical Commission informed County Judge Jerry Bearden that the County’s application for emergency funding for repairs and restoration to the Mason County Courthouse had been approved. The County’s application was part of the Round VII Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program that included 40 county applicants and of those, the THC Commissioners selected 7 major projects and 6 smaller projects to be funded. The Round VII grants totaled $21,195,204 allotted by the Texas Legislature in 2011. The total funding requested by the 40 applicants for all projects was around $172,000,000. Judge Bearden and the Commissioners Court feels very fortunate that Mason County was selected to receive $208,994 out of the $21,195,204 that the THC had to allocate for the projects. This is actually less than half of the amount that was requested by Judge Bearden when he presented testimony before the Texas Historical Commission meeting on January 10, 2012 on the need for emergency roof and electrical repairs for the Courthouse. Judge Bearden said that although he would have loved to have received the whole amount requested, he is tremendously pleased that the County was awarded the funds that they will receive. The competition for these dollars is tremendous and it goes to show that Mason County’s elected officials and citizens support of the courthouse restoration project is looked on favorably by the THC. The Court feels that these grant funds and the County’s match should be enough to address at least a major part of the roof and electrical issues. The poor condition of the courthouse roof and the dangerous condition of the electrical system on the third floor spurred the Commissioners Court to seek emergency grant money to help with the repairs. The Texas Legislature has not provided enough funding to cover the cost of the complete restoration project for the Mason County Courthouse but the County will continue to be involved in the future grant application process. With these grant funds, significant and necessary repairs can be accomplished which will carry Mason County’s project until the next funding cycle and also reduce the scope of a future restoration project.

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