• 52°

City officials never hear citizen’s comments, concerns

Orange, Texas never ceases to amaze me.

All this controversy about changes on city hall is something that should be thought about more carefully. The city officials on issues, especially this issue, never hear citizen’s comments and our concerns. The city hall is to remain in the downtown area as established by the city charter.

There is a vacant building downtown from our current city hall that would be ideal to move into. It would be a perfect location and still within the historical district. This building has been for sale for several years. At one time the officials considered buying the building but the price at that time was $1,400,000 and the electricity expense was astronomical. No one considered it recently. I found out it would sell at $525,000. Now how about that?

We have two million in the bank account so offer them $500,000 (they may take that offer) make the repairs that need to be done, interior and exterior and even if it cost another $500,000 you still have a million dollars left in the bank. When repairs are completed let the employees move in and gain the extra room needed rather than waiting several years the current option would require. Yes there are negatives that must be worked out. So do it and work them out. Stop all this fighting among your selves and make progress happen in Orange Texas. This is so simple I just don’t know what you officials think about when it comes “to build a better Orange, Texas.” First things first, get a contractor to put another exterior surface on the building. Why did past officials let the design of the building be built in the first place? It should have had an exterior to go with the theme of our downtown. Resurfacing the exterior would cut cost tremendously. Especially with electricity rates as high as they are. Down the road you could save money and add solar panels to the exterior of the building.   The building is in the historical district and is a landmark location of 5th and Green Avenue. Whatever it takes to do this then do it. If we were to have another major flood this building would not get water in it. Its four to five feet off the ground compared to the building on 16th street you are considering. My biggest concern is the way the elected officials are spending our tax dollars. An example such as where does all the revenue from the monthly report of the sales tax go. Sometimes it is $300,000.

Chuck Peterson

Orange