Freeport Neighbors Say City Hall Matters

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FREEPORT (WIFR) -- Neighbors in Freeport come together to send a clear message to the city's mayor and aldermen, save city hall.

The group Citizens for Saving Freeport City Hall group is trying to get more people on board with a plan to renovate the building with the message “This Place Matters.” To illustrate their message, the group hand delivered more than five hundred and fifty postcards from folks who say they want city services to move back to the old city hall building. Renovations there could cost around 3 million dollars. The city would spend that much in rent over the next 31 years. Supporters of renovation say the city needs to maintain the charm and history in its downtown.

“We call ourselves a historic downtown, so to me if you demolish that building you can’t make that claim anymore,” says Deb Elzinga, a member of Citizens for Saving Freeport City Hall. “Architects tell us if you renovate that building, because of the way it was built, dollar for dollar you get more bang for your buck."

The biggest question of course is how to fund a 3 million dollar renovation. Some could come from grants for historic preservation however, quite a bit of the money would come from loans. Voters in Freeport may get to weigh in on that question. The city has until January 22nd to put the issue on the ballot.

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