DSS groundbreaking, Monday

Published 1:35 am Saturday, October 23, 2010

JACKSON — The Northampton County Department of Social Services will soon have a new home.

 On Monday, a ground breaking ceremony for the new DSS facility will take place at 9 a.m. at the Northampton County Cultural and Wellness Center.

At the ceremony, Northampton DSS Director Dr. Al Wentzy along with his staff will be joined by Congressman G.K. Butterfield, Senator Ed Jones, Representative Michael Wray, USDA Rural Development Director Randall Gore, Northampton County Commission Chairperson Fannie Greene and DSS Board Chairman Eugene Taylor.

The ground breaking comes after county officials, with the support of state and federal leaders and agencies, sought out funding sources for the project.

The $7.46 million facility will be funded by a 30 year USDA Rural Development $6.96 million loan as well as a $500,000 grant. The county will also be reimbursed for 65 percent of the project costs by the federal government. Congressman Butterfield helped to secure $300,000 in additional funding for the grant, which was originally set at a maximum of $200,000.

The annual debt payment would have been $460,000, but with the reimbursement that yearly payment is reduced to approximately $142,000 out of the county coffers.

The planned facility location is adjacent to the Northampton County Cultural and Wellness Center. The 66,869 square foot facility will sit on a 15-acre site.