The Hebron City Council will meet early this Monday prior to the regular meeting as they get ready to make some hefty decisions regarding the Pioneer Center. The building is undergoing serious water damage and will have to be repaired soon, especially the roof.
The Pioneer Club became defunct earlier last year when the last member passed away. Since then, the City has taken over the Center since it houses public restrooms.
In March 2010, Howard and Sam Mills volunteered to manage the building keeping the restrooms clean and maintaining the kitchen and main living area for potential rentals. “I’m looking at retiring soon and it is a goal of mine to do some volunteer work,” Howard said. “The Pioneer Center looked like a place where I could do that.”
Mills said rental fees go back into a Pioneer Club fund which are used for restroom and kitchen upkeep. He and his wife receive a small fee for custodial duties, but do not receive anything to manage the Center.
He said there’s been more interest in renting the place since they made some changes including furniture switches and general cleaning. “When we first started we spent a great many hours just cleaning,” he said and noted that the restrooms are used daily. He said they asked for and received donated furniture which was much newer than what was in there and made sure the stoves, refrigerator and microwave were working and usable.
Basically the entire Center is okay to use except for the ceiling and roof damage. Due to the damaged roof, water tends to pour through the rafters into the center of the main sitting area. The resulting damage to the ceiling is now significant and will need to be replaced. The Council is trying to decide if it will be worth it.
“We have youth groups meeting there now, even holding dances,” Mills said. “We have received a lot of positive feedback from them about the Center.”
The Council will discuss maintenance and repair measures following its visit to the Center Monday night.