[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Columbia County offices, as envisioned at the old Wal Mart in Greenport."]
[/caption]Francesca Olsen of the Register-Star
and @ Issue, a Tuesday morning WGXC news program, reported out of at the Columbia County Chamber of Commerce
’s annual Legislative Breakfast Friday morning, April 8, that Chairman of the Board of Supervisors
Roy Brown has announced plans to buy the vacant Walmart in Greenport, and sell both the old Ockawamick building in Philmont and county buildings located at 401 and 610 State Street in Hudson. "Plans are to consolidate county offices in the Walmart building and 325 Columbia St," Olsen added. "There are also plans to vacate the current home of the Department of Social Services at 25 Railroad Ave., freeing it up for the city of Hudson to use as a court facility." The former Walmart was first brought up as a possible option for space consolidation last December by county Director of Planning and Economic Development Ken Flood
. "The county’s Capital Resource Corporation, a quasi-governmental organization whose board can provide tax-exempt bonding to civic and nonprofit organizations, voted earlier this year to put down a refundable, $50,000 deposit on the Walmart property so it stayed off the market for 90 days while the BOS evaluated the option," Olsen writes. "The 90 days runs out June 8. Brown said the project would be an '18-month consolidation effort.' He said he plans to bring the recommendation to the board’s public works committee this month, and hopes the board will pass a resolution accepting the idea, and the property’s purchase, at its full meeting in May." Brown also mentioned the county plans to create an express bus line from Hudson to the new facility, which would cut down on cab costs for DSS clients without transportation — which the county is mandated to pay for.