Montevallo City Council approves funding for construction of new city hall building

Funding plans to construct a new city hall building that will also house the police department was approved by the Montevallo City Council on Monday, Nov. 24. (Reporter Photo/Graham Brooks)

Funding plans to construct a new city hall building that will also house the police department was approved by the Montevallo City Council on Monday, Nov. 24. (Reporter Photo/Graham Brooks)

By GRAHAM BROOKS / Staff Writer

MONTEVALLO–The wait is over for the approval of funding for a new city hall and police department building as the Montevallo City Council agreed to move forward with Williford Orman Construction’s low bid of roughly $1.4 million to construct the new building.

A sense of relief came over Montevallo Mayor Hollie Cost who has been determined to find a way to construct a new city hall ever since she was appointed to city council.

“When I first got appointed to the city council ten years ago, my predecessor told me that one of the things we need to get accomplished was to get a new city hall,” Cost said after the council meeting on Monday, Nov. 24. “He said it was in bad shape and something we need to do so as soon as I got in office we started working on this and I’m just absolutely thrilled that we were finally able to move forward with this.”

The decision was not unanimous, however, as Councilman Rusty Nix showed concerns with the funding and the chance that the funds might be stretched too far as Montevallo is also looking to fund renovations to downtown along with the new city hall building.

“I would like to say I know we’ve come up with the money, but I’m really, really worried with the project and the downtown project we’ve got that we’re going to strap ourselves thin, we’re going to wind up going over budget on the downtown project,” Nix said.

Cost reassured Nix that the freeing up of funding sources, one of which was approved at the last council meeting on Nov. 10 would reinsure that the construction would not go over budget.

The council approved a transfer of nearly $385,000 from its sanitation reserve fund to its general fund reserve last city council meeting but it was still not enough to convince Nix.

“We feel like this is the face of the city and when businesses want to come to Montevallo and locate here, they come into a city hall that doesn’t look like its been cared for it sends a poor message to the residents,” Cost said of the aging building. “We want to send a better message and I think we’re going to be able to put our best foot forward.”