Contract approved for Northampton Courthouse annex

Published 6:01 pm Friday, April 7, 2023

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JACKSON – The new Northampton County Courthouse will also have an annex building on the site, and the Board of Commissioners approved a construction contract for the project at their meeting on Monday, April 3.

Board Attorney Scott McKellar presented the information to the board, explaining that the contract is with AR Chesson Construction of Williamston. That company is the same one that is currently building the new courthouse.

The county has $5 million allocated for the annex construction.

“This is no loan money. This is a grant given to us to complete the courthouse project,” emphasized Board Chair Charles Tyner.

Tyner noted that the $5 million in funds are from the USDA, and former US Representative G.K. Butterfield was instrumental in getting that grant for Northampton County before he left office last year.

Commissioner Geneva Faulkner motioned to approve the contract, and Commissioner Kelvin Edwards seconded. The vote was unanimously in favor.

As previously reported by the News Herald, the commissioners approved a capital project ordinance in June 2022 to include the annex in the courthouse project after they received notification of the $5 million in federal funding.

The courthouse construction project itself is being funded by a $14 million grant allocation, which was included in the state budget. But those state funds did not cover the cost for the proposed annex building, which is expected to house the county’s tax department, Register of Deeds office, and other administrative offices once completed.

A groundbreaking ceremony was held in December 2021 to celebrate the new courthouse, which will be located on a 10-acre parcel on Jefferson Street (Highway 158) in Jackson. The building will include a number of security upgrades along with two courtrooms, a multipurpose room, various offices, and more.

Tyner said he expects the annex building to be completed around the same time as the courthouse construction.