Earle set to reopen community center

Earle set to reopen community center

City hopes to make facility available for rental


Earle is making repairs to its community center so the city can once again rent the facility out to residents.

Several city councilmen recently were out at the building fixing a leaky roof, replacing broken windows, and mowing.

Councilman Bobby Luckett fixed a leaky spot on the roof and also installed some sheet rock; Councilman Donnie Cheers replaced the windows and did some concrete work around the door; and Councilman Robert Malone replaced some ceiling tiles, cleaned the bathroom, and did some weed-eating.

“It looks wonderful,” said Councilwoman Jimmie Barham. It is unbelievable what these men have done.

They gave all their labor. I sure thank them for what they have done.”

The former car dealership has been sitting unused for about five years The city received a grant in 2013 from East Arkansas Planning and Development District for $22,000 to renovate the building.

The city installed air conditioning units, fixed the roof, replaced ceiling tile, tore out a wall, and expanded the kitchen.

The center has hosted a free health clinic, but has mostly sat vacant. Plans to rent it to East Arkansas Family Health Center fell through and numerous ideas to utilize the building for community and youth events have also never materialized.

The glass and concrete work cost $700 and the roofing work cost $800.

Councilman Charlie Young donated $550 toward the repairs and City Clerk Cynthia Conner donated $150. “It didn’t end up costing the city anything,” said Councilman Robert Malone.

The center even has its first renter.

The council agreed to rent the building at a special council meeting on may 31 to Jeanetta Burton for a family function.

“It is a nice building,” Malone said. “It’s about time the community gets to use it and we get some money out of it.”

By Mark Randall