Tonight’s Workshop and the Issues pertaining to the Carver School again

The Town is considering grants for lighting in the Mill Street Area, as well as a park for parents and children with picnic tables grills, etc.  What was not known before is the fact that when the Carver School Property was given to White Springs, there were stipulations required.  If these stipulations were not met, the property would revert back to the School District.
The School District required a storm building as well as a playground; thus the community building was determined as the means to satisfy that agreement before it is turned back to the Hamilton County School District.
When I advised them that one could not build a storm approved community Center if $160,000 was the cost of demolition by Hamilton County.  Stacy kept stating Hamilton County would not be paid for the job and it would not be deducted from the $160,000.  I told her that was incorrect, because we had the copy of the invoice (which I believe was submitted with the last application).  Hamilton County does not do work for free no matter what the Town seems to think…that is what happened the last time.  Hamilton County was not paid the FEMA money the town received and I remember Pam thought that was for free.  Now granted Hamilton County is our partner, but we don’t even use them or pay for their services so it’s not much of a partnership.


I objected to the destruction of the Carver school because it was on the Florida Historic Site.  Tonja Brown said she called the State and it is not.  I told her I knew both Joe and Nikki searched the site and found that it was a historic site.  The Grant handler said if it is part of the historic sites listed, the State would stop the demolition.


I contacted Nikki Williams this evening on Facebook and she advised it is on the “endangered Historical Sites” for the State of Florida.  I could not readily find the paperwork and perhaps I do have it, but I know Nikki has it and she will find it because that School is not for the chopping block.


It was stated that the structure may not be up to code as a structure withstanding storms.  Walter McKenzie then said, if the entire building could not be renovated, perhaps a portion of it could be and that would possibly make sense because I believe it can be fixed.  We have a hurricane proof roof and one could be done to the school and then areas could be fixed on the inside with some structural additions and we would have a great community center as well as classrooms.


Joe Griffin made a statement that it is strange to have the Willie Guy Turner Park just a couple blocks from the new proposed park.  It doesn’t make sense except for the fact that it is required by the School District or Hamilton County.   Although the lighted basketball court was placed as an option with the park and community center, both Tom Moore and myself suggested a skate boarder rink; but we get only $50,000 for the park grant if it is rewarded and that would not be sufficient for a Skateboard park.


But two parks in a row doesn’t make sense, unless one park differs greatly from the other park.  I also scolded the council that they ignore me continually but that we need a pedestrian crossing with an amber light in order for families and children to cross Highway 41 to the park or Dollar General.  This is what our LOFT funds could be used for and I do not understand how the council does not care how a road crossing could impact the lives of adults and children who may be hit by oncoming vehicles and heavy trucks which could not stop in time.


Anyway an excuse was given by Brown that she talked with all the people and the reason we did not have many more is because they had to go to church at 6:00 P.M.  But she said so many want what she suggested.  Well if someone wanted to give me something free which did not impact me only all Taxpayers in the State of Florida, I guess I would say it was a great idea too.  But as a conservative, we should request those things we need the most but in this case, the County or the School District has the Town over a barrel and that is great to me.  I hope it reverts back to them because maybe we could apply for state funds to save the Washington Carver School with its historic value.


Furthermore, Tonja said in the Black Community someone is always having a party and I agree with that, so that the park would be used frequently.  I have gone to such parties, one for the Marshall Reunion where I helped Richard Marshall cook chicken for the crowd.  I do not believe most people would like to be far away from refrigerators, and their houses, and have to bring all the food to a park; maybe that’s just my idea.  But even with the parties we have held here, it has been important to bring more supplies out and I could not do that in a park for a group of people aside from just my small family.


People think about what the council is doing!  Do they really have your interests if they don’t even wish to slow traffic down for pedestrians.


It was mentioned by Joe Griffin that we have another park in town where he sees no one every time he goes by and that is a waste of $250,000 on the White Springs Florida Immokalee Park.  Spencer Lofton said it is not a waste because he goes to the park daily to read his bible.  Apparently he is another person who is trying to impress everyone, like Shirley Heath used to do, about what a “Great Christian” each is.  But what they do to others and how they lie, cheat and steal from others without compassion does not make these people Good Christians.  I would rather see someone who treats others well rather than treating others badly and saying they read the bible daily …because obviously they are not really reading the bible or they certainly do not understand the words.


I told Mr. McKenzie that my complaints are not about the “Park” but the fact that Townsend received the Money to build a “Business Incubator” and the park certainly did not incubate any businesses.
Karin for the blog

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