CENTERVILLE -- From the police chief to the mayor to the county commission chairman, officials speaking at Wednesdays ribbon cutting for the citys new police station thanked the public for its support.
The city financed the $2.1 million project, which included a $350,000 renovation of the former library into Centerville Municipal Court. But revenue from a special purpose local option sales tax is earmarked to pay off the financing.
Houston County residents voted to extend a 2006 penny tax in 2012 for additional projects that included the new police station and city court. The project remained within budget.
I didnt see any frills in it, said Houston County Commission Chairman Tommy Stalnaker after a tour of the 4,200-square-foot facility. What they spent went a long way.
Stalnaker said the new station was much needed.
Chief Sid Andrews joked that officers would now be able to operate the microwave without having to turn out all the other lights.
Joking aside, Andrews said his vision for the new station, which has a large conference room, would also be used by the community. He said some Neighborhood Watch meetings have already taken place there.
The new station became fully operational Feb. 18.
Others who spoke at the ceremony included Mayor John Harley; Dave Cyr of Parrish Construction Group, which built the station; state Rep. Willie Talton, R-Warner Robins, a former veteran law enforcement officer who served as Centerville police chief for a year; and longtime Houston County Sheriff Cullen Talton (no relation).
Darla Stahl of Woodmen of the World donated an American flag for the new station, and the Centerville Police Departments honor guard posted the colors. Georgia State Patrol bagpipe piper Dan Bray played God Bless America as the flag was raised at the station.
Yellow crime scene tape stretched in front of the staging area for the ceremony and was tied in a big bow in the middle. It served as the ribbon cut for the ceremony.
Architect David Selby of Macon-based MBS Architects designed the station. Tours of the station at 308 Church St. and of the courthouse that shares a parking lot followed the ceremony.
Telephone numbers at the new station remain the same as at the old. The main number is 478-953-4222.
To contact writer Becky Purser, call 256-9559.