Discussion of the fate of the old Baileysville High School building continued at last Monday’s Board of Education meeting.
The structure has been in use as a community center in recent years.
Recently, the BOE has been going through the process of unencumbering itself from buildings no longer used as schools.
Superintendent of Schools Deirdre Cline said she had sent emails to the board’s law firm, Bowles Rice, to ask for advice on how to proceed on Baileysville and some other properties.
The board had believed that the old BHS had been turned over to the Brenton Church of God in 2003. But no deed has ever been found.
Cline said the situation was fluid, and she was not prepared to make a recommendation now.
Board Member Mike Davis commented that he hoped it would be explained to Rev. Lee Fisher of the Brenton Church of God that it was necessary to obtain 501(c)3 status as a non-profit entity and the legal requirements that go along with that.
Board Member Allan Stiltner noted that grants might be available to help pay utilities.
Eddie Cameron, who is active in helping at the community center, said children were the first priority for him.
“My concern has always been the kids,” he stated. “That (center) is the only thing left in Baileysville.
“What are the kids going to do (if it closes)?” he asked.
The estimated time to acquire 501(c)3 status is six to ten months.
“We can’t continue to pay $16,000 a year (on the utilities).” Stiltner said.
Cline said the Mullens Opportunity Center (MOC) is a model (for this type of building,”
“I would like to see it used as a community center,” remarked Board Member Doug Lester.
“The board doesn’t want to take anything away from Wyoming County,” said BOE President Mike Prichard.
The board tabled the matter to give Fisher the opportunty to start the process of getting a 501 (c) 3.
Cline said in an interview on Friday that the situation remains “fluid” as more information is gathered.
Also, the BOE learned that it is completely unencumbered of the old Beartown school. Pocahontas Land sold the property in the early 2000s.
John Conley can be reached at 304-732-6060 or on Twitter @PIHnews.