Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

August 23, 2013

Navarro Community Foundation pledges $1 million to courthouse restoration

By Bob Belcher
Corsicana Daily Sun

Corsicana — The Navarro Community Foundation announced Friday a pledge of $1 million to Navarro County in support of the proposed courthouse restoration project.

Bruce Robinson, executive secretary of the foundation, said Friday the grant was authorized at a special meeting of the foundation’s board this week.

“Like everybody else, we like the idea of preserving the historical significance of (the courthouse) in Navarro County,” Robinson said of the board’s decision. “One of the ‘crown jewels’ of the county is that courthouse.”

Robinson said the grant was contingent on voters approving a bond issue in the November election to help pay the county’s share of the restoration project, a ballot issue he said the foundation would be supporting.

“We wish we could do this without any bond election but that’s just not the reality — it costs money to do these things,” he said. “If we don’t do it now, we lose the $4.4 million from the state and you’re still faced with a courthouse that needs repair.”

“We’ve got to have a courthouse to do the county’s business, and the one that we have is in terrible condition,” Robinson added.

The grant funds will help pay for costs that cannot be covered by bond proceeds or the state’s grant of $4.4 million to help pay for the historic restoration.

Robinson said the foundation grant is planned to be distributed over a four-year period, and that the foundation would coordinate the distribution to help meet the county’s needs during the construction and renovation.

Navarro County Commissioners are scheduled to vote Monday on calling for the November bond issue.

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Bob Belcher may be reached by email at bbelcher@corsicanadailysun.com. Want to “Soundoff” on this story? Email: soundoff@corsicanadailysun.com