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Aaron's Building could get new life

| Thursday, May 16, 2013, 12:51 a.m.

Connellsville City Council members are hopeful the dilapidated Aaron's Building at the corner of North Pittsburgh and Apple streets will soon see new life.

Council passed a resolution Wednesday night approving an agreement of sale that will transfer the Aaron's Building property to Terry “Tuffy” Shallenberger Jr. on the condition that he either restores, renovates or demolishes the building within 18 months of the property transfer.

Shallenberger bought the property from the city for $1.

Mayor Charles Matthews said they have been working with Shallenberger on the proposal for about a month.

“This is something that will be a monumental achievement for this city and we should be real thankful to Mr. Shallenberger,” Matthews said. “We took him on a tour and he's in love with the building.”

As part of the resolution, the city authorized the Connellsville Redevelopment Authority to reallocate any funds that were set aside to demolish the building.

Council accepted the resignation of David Waggett from the city's zoning hearing board, agreed to appoint Carl Ritenour to the board, and agreed to reappoint Shawn Pilla to the board.

Ritenour's term will expire the first Monday of 2016. Pilla's term will expire the first Monday of 2018.

Matthews said this is a very important board within the city and they are still looking for one more person to complete the five-member board.

Council reappointed Paul Whipkey to the Shade Tree Commission. His term will expire the first Monday in January 2018.

Shawn Sherwood and Kyle Karwatsky were hired as part-time summer workers for the public works department at a rate of $7.25 an hour.Council also:

• Passed a resolution directing the Connellsville Redevelopment Authority to revise the city's 2010 CDBG program, to add replacement of stage flooring to the previously approved community center line item activity.

• Decided to advertise to accept bids for the 2003 Ford Taurus used by the city's police department. All bids are to be certified, a cashier's check or a money order, and accompanied by a 10 percent bid bond. All bids are due no later than 4 p.m. June 19.

• Approved the Connellsville Area Senior Citizen's filing of a request for exemption with the Fayette County Board of Assessment for the senior citizen property owned by the city.

• Agreed to apply for a recycling 902 Grant from the Department of Environmental Protection.

Rachel Basinger is a freelance writer.

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