No thanks

Published 9:50 am Monday, August 13, 2012

WINDSOR – Thanks, but no thanks.

The Bertie County Commissioners gave that message to the local school board Monday morning.

During their regular meeting, the commissioners unanimously agreed they had no interest in purchasing the former C.G. White High School or the wastewater treatment facilities at C.G. White or Askewville Pre-School.

Bertie County Schools interim Superintendent Elaine White sent letters to the commissioners making them aware of the three properties being declared surplus by the school board.

“According to Board policy, the board will offer the Board of Commissioners the first option to obtain the property at a fair market price or at a price negotiated between the two boards,” White wrote.

She went on to say the most recent North Carolina Department of Instruction insurance appraisal lists the replacement value of C.G. White at just over $6 million. The actual cash value is slightly more than $3.7 million.

“If the Board of County Commissioners is interested in the above property our Board is prepared to negotiate a price with you,” she wrote.

In similar letters, White said the treatment plant at C.G. White was valued at just under $30,000 and the one at Askewville Pre-School was worth approximately $32,000.

“By law they have to offer it to us first, but if not, then they move to plan b, whatever that may be,” Commissioner Norman M. Cherry Sr. said.

Commission Chairman L.C. Hoggard III said the board could consider whether or not to acquire the property during an upcoming work session, but other board members said they had no interest in discussing the idea.

“I make a motion we decline their offer on all three properties,” Commissioner Rick Harrell said.

Commission Vice Chairman J. Wallace Perry offered a second and the motion passed without objection.

“I don’t see how we could afford it, if we wanted it,” Harrell said.

Cherry agreed.

“We’re in the process of trying to build a $20 million new high school, now to spend $6 million on a building no one is using,” Cherry asked. “I’m not in favor of that.”

Harrell asked if J.P. Law Elementary School in Merry Hill was mentioned in the offer and was told it had not been.