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Brundidge Station back on agenda

At its Tuesday meeting, the Brundidge City Council will once again consider changes to the rental policy for Brundidge Station, the city’s multi-purpose facility that houses the Brundidge Nutrition Program on a daily basis.

On September 6, 2016, the council voted and approved recommended changes to the policy that included an increase in the rental fee and licensed security or an off duty police offer at the lessee’s expense for events between the hours of 6 p.m. and 12 a.m.

The rental fee increase was from $100 a day with a $50 refundable deposit to $200 a day with a $100 refundable deposit.

Referenced on the rental policy was that no concession sales or admission charges could be collected on the premises of Brundidge Station at any time.

The changes were to go into effect January 1, 2017. However, at the council’s meeting on January 3, Council Member Betty Baxter, District 1, voiced opposition to the changes for the multipurpose facility. Baxter cited the inability of some residents to pay the increase in the rental policy and also the inability to pay a security guard.

Baxter also said the 12 a.m. curfew does not give the lessee adequate time to vacate the building after an event and said the curfew should be extended to 2 a.m. Mayor Isabell Boyd and Council Members Arthur Lee Griffin, District 2, and Byron Gaynor, District 4, were in agreement.

Council Member Margaret Ross, District 3 opposed the 2 p.m. curfew. Council Member Chris Foster, District 5, did not express an opinion at that time.

However, Foster said Friday that his impression is that the multi-purpose building is to be used specifically for community and family-type events.

“I don’t really think the city should be in competition with other event-type businesses in and nearby the city,” he said. Ross said she is opposed to the 2 a.m. curfew and supports an increase in the rental fee.

“Brundidge Station is here for the use of our citizens for events such as receptions, birthday parties and family reunions,” she said. “It was never intended to be a night club. Nothing needs to be going on in the city of Brundidge at 2 a.m. We don’t need that kind of activity. Brundidge Station is not a juke joint.”

Ross said she favors the increase in the rental policy.

“We just spent nearly $12,000 to have the floor of Brundidge Station redone,” she said.

To get the inside of the building repainted will be a thousand dollars or more. When a building is rented, it’s going to require more maintenance and those who rent it should share some of the financial responsibility.”

Boyd said she will hold her comments on the rental policy until Tuesday’s meeting. Council Members Baxter and Griffin could not be reached Friday for comment.

The Brundidge City Council will meet at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Brundidge City Hall. The meeting is open to the public.