Columbiana addresses senior citizens’ concerns

In light of a recent letter from concerned senior citizens on the conditions of the building which serves as their senior center and over the receipt by the city of $20,000 from the county for improvements, the Reporter contacted Columbiana Mayor Allan Lowe and councilmember Ouida Mayfield.

&uot;We are in the process of looking at a new building in Columbiana,&uot; said Mayfield of the need for a new senior citizens center.

She said the seniors have been meeting in a building that belongs to the Columbiana Housing Authority and where the Meals on Wheels Program

is located.

While Mayfield said a $20,000 grant from the county for senior center improvements has not been spent, she said it will be spent under

guidelines set forth by the county.

According to Mayfield, the money cannot be spent to purchase a building.

But, she said, if the city has a

building, it can spend up to the $20,000 to improve it.

Mayfield said the city’s last newsletter reported that the money from the county has been received.

And while she said the city has been looking at a house on County Road 47 for a senior center, she said the city &uot;might rethink&uot; that location.

&uot;I know the seniors need a building, and we want them to have a building,&uot; said Mayfield. &uot;We are going to move on it as quickly as we can.&uot;

Mayor Lowe explained the city’s indecision at this point on using the house mentioned by Mayfield.

He said the original plan was to lease a building owned by Dr. Stancil Handley on County Road 47.

But Lowe said based on estimates, costs to improve that house will &uot;far exceed the $20,000&uot; the city has from the county for improvements to a senior center.

&uot;Our longterm objective is to have something dedicated to senior citizens for their exclusive use whether it is a stand-alone building or addition,&uot; said Lowe.

He also said that if the city is going to make a capital expense of that magnitude, city leaders want it to be a city-owned building on city-owned land