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Gates County Library gains LGC approval

RALEIGH – Gates County’s plans to construct a new public library took a big step forward here Tuesday (March 6).

During a scheduled meeting of the North Carolina Local Government Commission (LGC), the Executive Committee of that state entity gave unanimous support in allowing Gates County officials to move forward with financing the new library.

The county’s board of commissioners agreed at a meeting in November of last year to borrow $1.5 million from BB&T Bank (at a 1.77 percent interest rate, with payback over five years) to construct the library. That decision was contingent upon the LGC’s approval, which came on Tuesday.

“It was stated at the LGC’s meeting that it’s their job to determine the financial stability of Gates County, not to become involved in the politics of Gates County,” said County Commissioners Chairman Graham Twine, apparently noting the year-long public debate, pro and con, over building a new library. “Like any other board of commissioners across our state we depend on the advice of the LCG when it comes to ensuring we’re capable from a financial standpoint of taking on new debt.”

Twine went on to say that the county is expected to close on the loan next week with BB&T.

“That loan will not be above $1.5 million, that’s the financial cap we earlier agreed to for this project,” Twine noted.

He added that the county will select the contractor for the building project by March 19. Twine said there were at least 12 construction firms to enter bids.

Twine said that ownership of the property on which the new library will be built has been transferred to the county from Kim Old, the developer of Merchants Commerce Center located on US 158 across from Gates County High School. Old gave the county the property (three acres) for free.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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