OSCEOLA COUNTY — Renovations to the former Hersey Elementary School in Hersey are “making steady progress,” preparing the building for the opening of the Osceola County Commission on Aging’s new seniors center, said the COA director, Justin Halladay.

Halladay updated the board of commissioners on the progress of the renovations at their meeting last week, saying things were not progressing as quickly as he had hoped.

“The desks themselves are the frustrating part,” Halladay said. “The gentleman we chose (to do the job) told me he could start right away and he hasn’t started yet. I’ve been in touch with him to order things, and he didn’t. Last week, he said he was still out for two to three weeks because things were stuck. With that, I ask permission from the board to move on to the second bidder if they are unable to start the project. »

The board has authorized Halladay to do whatever is necessary to move the project forward.

“The main areas being worked on right now are interior office construction, plumbing and computer work,” Halladay told the Pioneer. “Plumbing and IT are almost complete. We are still awaiting the delivery of some materials and equipment.

He added that the interior construction of the offices was delayed as the original contractor backed out of the process and moved on to the second bidder.

“Hopefully this speed bump is over and we can move forward quickly,” he said. “I originally hoped to open the facility in June, but now it feels more like late July or August.”

Halladay said that once the elements of the project are complete, there are still various things to do, including septic inspection and inspection of the facility for licensing.

When completed, the new senior center will serve Reed City, Evart, Hersey, Richmond Township, Lincoln Township and Cedar Township, Halladay said.

The size of the new facility will also allow it to move the COA’s administrative offices to the new location, and possibly bring the Department of Veterans Services there, and possibly move Tustin’s meal preparation to the new location. , he previously said. .

“Kitchen staff, administrative staff, everyone will be in one place,” he said. “We can combine some of our services and not be so scattered.”

With this new facility, they can offer Osceola County seniors something they haven’t had before, including educational opportunities and activities not available at current meal sites, a- he added.

“I know my staff, my customers and the community are excited to have the facility available and open soon,” he said.


In other cases, the council approved the listing of the Evart COA building with an estate agent to market it to a wider audience.

Halladay told the board that he had a yard sign made that read “Building For Sale / Inquire Inside” but it was destroyed, and so far they haven’t. have received no survey of the building.

“I would like the board to consider listing it with a real estate agent to put it on the market,” he said. “I don’t think it will sell any other way.”

The board previously decided to sell the Evart building and the Tustin meal site facility, once they are vacated. The county is asking for $400,000 for the Evart building.

Halladay said a real estate agent took a walk through the Tustin building to get a breakdown of the market and comparables and recommended an asking price of $110,000 to $115,000.