The issue pertaining to purchasing the former Thomas Motor Cars’ property east of Quincy was back on the county commission agenda last week.
The original issue had been approved to allow Capital City Bank Group, which now owns the property, to seek a state Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) for the purchase and remodeling of the property for use by the county’s Emergency Medical Services (EMS).
Capital City Bank did not meet the timelines to get the grant and the issue was dropped by the commission.
This time however, when it came before the commission, the commission agreed to seek the grant again.
The new agreement was approved by a 4-1 vote with Commissioner Brenda Holt voting against the measure.
Holt said she did not want to tie up the potential for a grant in a project the county may not get. The county, she explained, could only apply for two grants per year.
Holt said she wanted the county to hire a grant writer for the upcoming year and did not want the county to be limited to only one grant.
Chairman Eric Hinson said he had previously opposed the issue but now saw the property and grant process as a way in which the county could grow.
He said that if the property was purchased by the county, even if it was not used for the ambulance service it could be used for another business venture.
He stated that one of the facts he has learned about economic growth is that new businesses are looking for buildings to move into.
The new agreement has been reviewed by the county attorney and the contract extends the dates to June 30, 2015 to allow additional time to seek grant funding.
An environmental study has been conducted on the property and shows the site to be clear of contamination and environmental concerns.
The purchase of this property by the county is contingent on the award of grant funds sufficient to cover the purchase price and renovation costs estimated to be between $1.5 and $2 million.