Fri, Sep 17, 2021
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Willapa Harbor Herald
Lewis County News
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(360) 942-3466 • PO Box 706, Raymond, WA 98577

Toledo talking with Lions for use of VFW building

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The Toledo School District has said they are entertaining the option of leasing the building currently used by VFW Post 3429 to the Toledo Lions Club, as the VFW is making plans to move out at the end of May.

Post 3429 had contacted the district April 1 to inform them the post would be dissolving May 31, after which time ownership of the building would revert back to the district, from whom the VFW acquired the property in 1947 through a warranty deed.

Superintendent Sharon Bower told the District Board Thursday the Lions Club has expressed an interest in using the building, located at 5516 Jackson Hwy., for their regular events and meetings, though talks have only been speculative and an official proposal has yet to be presented.

“Our attorney is suggesting that we make sure that they understand they’re responsible for the upkeep of the building,” she told the board, stating the Lions Club would be responsible for utilities and maintenance should they lease the property.

Lions Club member Mike Morgan, to whom Bower said she has been speaking about use of the building, said the costs of upkeep are an important factor, as the likely-thousands of dollars in yearly expenses would essentially be money taken from other community programs the club has been supporting.

Morgan also said the club has not been in immediate need for a facility, as their regular meetings have been held either at the Morgan Arts Centre or Kemp Olson Memorial Park, depending on the weather, and a proposal to use the VFW building was put forward simply because it was a unique opportunity for the club, should they desire to pursue such a facility.

Morgan also said the Lions are waiting to make an official decision until after it is clear what the district’s legal obligations will be in re-acquiring the property, which Bower has indicated is an ongoing process.

If a deal is struck leasing the property to the Lions Club, Bower said a nominal charge will be required by the district for its use, though only to remain within state regulations against gifting of public resources and not as a revenue source.

Prior to moving out of the facility, Post 3429 said they are expecting to hold a yard sale May 2-4 with the hope of raising at least $700 to cover final utilities and closing costs.

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