Supes to start repairs on Cleveland Courthouse
by Paisley Boston
Jan 08, 2014 | 856 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Look out Rosedale Courthouse; the Bolivar County Courthouse in Cleveland is set to receive a facelift all of its own.

According to Bolivar County Administrator Will Hooker, the Cleveland Courthouse does not have as many needed repairs as the Rosedale Courthouse but it has an extensive amount of water damage visible in the courtroom.

The county received over $200,000 from the Mississippi Department of Archives and History to help fund the project.

"The board of supervisors divided the repairs for the courthouse into two phases, we did not receive full funding for the first phase but we were able to save the county some money," said Hooker.

According to Hooker, the repairs to the courthouse were of high priority to the board of supervisors during the 2013 summer work session.

"We observed that we were having moisture issues especially in the courtroom, one of the things that we wanted to do was to find out what was causing the moisture damage," said Hooker.

"Sure we could have just repaired the areas of the roof that needed to be fixed but within six months, the courthouse would have been facing the same problem. We could have just plastered the ruined areas but we investigated and found the root of the problem," he added.

Hooker said that after having the courtroom inspected extensively, they were notified that the origin of the problem was due to an excessive amount of moisture that had been seeping into the roof and walls.

"The Cleveland Courthouse has a very high historical significance and we would have been proactive in fixing it, then it could have led to an even bigger problem," Hooker added.

Hooker said that water was getting into the membrane of the roof and had caused damage to the walls as well.

"The damage was highly noticeable inside of the courtroom and it was a bit of an eye sore," said Supervisor Preston Billings.

Hooker said that the Bolivar County Board of Supervisors is highly appreciative of the financial assistance that was rendered to aid in this project."

"We would like to thank the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, the board of trustees and committee members for selecting Bolivar County and helping us preserve this historical site, said Hooker.

According to the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, grant funds may be used to pay the cost of acquisition, preservation, restoration, operation, administration and support of Mississippi Landmark properties.

The Board of Trustees of MDAH reviews the applications and award grant funds to eligible projects when the Mississippi Landmark Grant Program has enough of a balance to award grants.

Due to the lack of funding, most grants that are awarded are for emergency repairs only.

To be eligible to participate, a building must be designated a Mississippi Landmark under the provisions of the Antiquities Law of Mississippi prior to application.

Grant applications may be submitted by state agencies, county or municipal governments, school districts, nonprofit organizations that have been granted Section 501 (c)(3) tax-exempt status by the United States Internal Revenue Service, or private owners of Mississippi Landmark properties.

The grant request may not exceed $300,000 per project.

Applicants must provide evidence of cash matching funds at the time of application.

Nonprofit and governmental applicants must provide a cash match not less than 20 percent of the grant award while all other applicants must provide a cash match not less than 50 percent of the grant award.

Grant awards will be paid to the grantee by the Department on a reimbursable basis upon the successful completion of the project.