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Town donates lot for next Habitat project

MONTICELLO – The town will provide a lot for the next Habitatfor Humanity home, aldermen agreed Tuesday night.

Mayor David Nichols said he received a request from the localchapter of the national organization requesting the town donate alot it owns on Cannon Street.

“I think this is a good idea,” Nichols said. “It takes city landnot in use and puts it back on the tax rolls.”

District Five Alderman Steve Clyburn supported the plan.

“They’re doing in this in Kansas, and it is really revitalizinga lot of the urban towns,” he said.

There was no opposition.

Nichols could not say when Habitat for Humanity would begin thehome. He said the organization must first review applications andselect a prospective homeowner. Then it will begin the process ofseeking financing and donations of labor and materials.

In other matters, Nichols informed the board that an industrialprospect would be in Monticello today to visit the McLain Building.The town is in the process of negotiating a lease for the buildingpotential tenant.

Nichols said the prospective tenant planned to visit thebuilding with several potential investors to finalize plans for thelease.

“I don’t know if they’ll have the lease signed or not,” themayor said. “I’m hopeful.”

Officials would not say what type of industry is planning tomove into the building until a lease is signed.

To say anything before then, Nichols said, would endanger thenegotiations.

The board also approved a motion to rezone an area behind theIGA grocery store to allow for the construction of dormitory-styleliving quarters for migrant workers.

The project is the brainchild of a local businessman who employsaround 30 migrant workers for extended periods and an addition70-110 seasonally.

Also included in the project is the creation of a strip mallbetween the grocery store and Radio Shack that would be anchored bya national chain store. The identity of the anchor store has notbeen revealed.

“They’re interlocked,” Nichols said. “We won’t get one withoutthe other.”

Aldermen approved the rezoning contingent on the project’ssuccess. Should the project not develop, the property will remainzoned for central business.