Family Resource Center

The Family Resource Center, along with two other tenants, are housed in building separate from the Historic Hernando School. The county plans to tear down the building for parking and will be evicting the tenants.

THE ISSUE:

County and Family Resource Center reach agreement on extending lease.

OUR OPINION:

A win/win decision, but not the final one.


Threatened with 60-day notice of lease termination, the Family Resource Center now has agreement for a longer-term lease that keeps that organization and two others in their home at the Historic Hernando School through September 2020.

The longer lease gives the resource center, Friends of the Citrus County Library System and Episcopal Children’s Services more time to find a new home when the county razes the building as part of the restoration of the historic building.

The wing occupied by these organizations was added later and is not part of the historic structure, so it will not be restored.

Additionally, the building needs roof repairs and possible air conditioning, and the county has been hesitant to spend money on these repairs for a building scheduled to be torn down.

For this reason, the county had planned for a commission vote at the May 28 meeting to send notices to these agencies that their leases would be terminated in

60 days.

This schedule created major problems, particularly for the resource center, which provides multiple services to individuals and families in the Hernando area.

Fortunately for the building tenants, and for Citrus County citizens who receive services from them, the county and the agencies reached a compromise that extends leases through September 2020, with

the provision that the organizations will be financially responsible for roof or air conditioning repairs should they be needed.

This gives more time for the organizations to find new homes, and does not commit the county making repairs to a building that will eventually be torn down. This seems like a reasonable compromise that protects the county from financial exposure and at the same time gives the organizations breathing room.

But even though this is a temporary reprieve, it is not the final solution. These organizations will still need to find new homes. Given the fact that the services they provide ultimately represent a savings to the county, we hope county officials will work with them to help find more permanent homes so that the services they offer will continue unabated.

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(1) comment

CathyL

I am a volunteer with the Friends of the Citrus County Library System (FOCCLS). I attended the county commissioners meeting on May 28th. I did not hear “agreement†with the proposed lease extension from the FOCCLS representatives who attended the meeting. In fact, I think most of the representatives, including myself, were stunned with the Family Resource Center’s proposal to extend the lease with the caveat that the three agencies involved would become financially responsible for any A/C or roof repairs, should they become necessary. I would like to see the Chronicle publish an article about FOCCLS contribution to the library system and our need to find a new home for our “Book Houseâ€. We are a strictly volunteer organization who through our bi-annual book sales provide about $70,000 a year to the library system for acquisitions. Donated books, puzzles, games, CDs and DVDs are sorted, priced and packed at the book house in preparation for our sales. Without a new home in which to accomplish these tasks, there will be no more book sales. We need to get the word out that we need a new home and we are hoping the county commissioners will assist us in finding an affordable solution that is “agreeable†to all parties concerned.

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