Asking about Galbreath status

(Posted June 19, 2014)

By Sandi Latimer, Staff Writer

Herman Stanley, vice president of the West Jefferson Youth Athletic Association (WJYAA), wants to know the fate of the recently shuttered Galbreath Recreation Hall.

At the June 16 West Jefferson Council meeting, Stanley complained that he hasn’t heard anything since late March when an engineer’s report declared the building to be structurally unsound. Currently, the building stores athletic equipment.

“To me, as a taxpayer, not as the vice president of an organization or the WJYAA, I’d like to know, is it worth fixing?” he said. “Shouldn’t you be getting quotes on the cost of the work, then decide which way to go?”

Stanley was critical of the inspection and the engineer the village used, but West Jefferson Public Service Director Dave Metzger said the report was made by a certified structural engineer.

Councilman Jim King, chairman of the parks and recreation committee, said he was trying to set a meeting to decide what to do about the building.

“The way I see it, there are there are three ways we could go,” said councilman Ray Martin. “Do we fix it, do we need a new building or do we build a community recreation center?”

Council president Ron Garver said city officials will do what is best for the taxpayer. He said council members have discussed Galbreath Hall at every meeting since it was closed.

While a community recreation center has been talked about many times over the years, no decision had been made.

Resident Carl Fladt said he supports the idea of a new building that would serve both senior citizens and youths.

“The youth is not interested in a community center,” Stanley protested.

“That makes no sense,” Garver responded.

“With a full-blown community center, the youth would not have use of the center,” Stanley maintained.

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