Ahoskie narrows choices for PD location

Published 12:00 am Saturday, November 18, 2006

AHOSKIE – The list is down to two.

A pair of town-owned lots are now the main focus of where Ahoskie officials may choose to construct a new police station.

At Tuesday’s meeting of the Ahoskie Town Council, it was learned that the two possible locations are the corner of Main Street and Curtis Street, near the old Ahoskie High School Band Room, and the corner of Maple Street and South Street, the area of the old VEPCO building.

Ahoskie Town Manager Tony Hammond said the $1.2 million project remains in the planning stages. Town officials are still in the process of gathering information, including the square footage needed for the new station as well as exploring financing options.

At Tuesday’s meeting, Garland Burnette of USDA Rural Development briefed Ahoskie Town Council members on what his organization could offer the town.

Burnette explained that grants would be available, but Ahoskie would have to compete with other municipalities also seeking USDA funds.

“We’re expecting only $10 to $12 million in grants for North Carolina next year,” Burnette said. “However, it’s not untypical that we received more from Washington, D.C. after we’ve drawn down the original amount. But we won’t know how much extra we will receive until March of next year.”

Burnette said he doubted Ahoskie, if approved for a grant, would receive 100 percent of the amount needed for the project. However, he said USDA Rural Development would be happy to work with the town in combining grant funding with a low interest, long term loan to finance the project.

Council members approved a motion to proceed with the project, including moving forward with an application for a USDA Rural Development grant.