Selma Civic Center Committee Awaiting Decision On USDA Grant

Members of the Selma Civic Center Committee will have to wait a little longer before they find out if they will receive a $225,000 grant to help them renovate a building purchased on North Webb Street in 2016 from the Selma American Legion.

Ann Williams, a member of the committee, updated members of the Selma Town Council on the progress Tuesday night.

The Committee initially applied for a $300,000 USDA Rural Enterprise Grant but later adjusted the request to $225,000.  Williams said the grant application was filed before the January 25th deadline. Officials were told a decision would be made in March but that was postponed to April. A decision in April was also delayed. Committee members hope to know if they will receive the USDA funding within 30 days.

Ann Williams, a member of the Selma Civic Center Committee, gives an update to the Selma Town Council on Tuesday night. The committee is waiting to find out if they will receive a $225,000 USDA grant. Photo

A total of 13 organizations from North Carolina applied for the federal funds. Two were disqualified leaving 11 groups vying for the money.

Williams said the Civic Center Committee lost out on an $18,000 grant from The Covington Foundation in Greensboro. They had hoped to use the money to replace the roof.

The Town Council did authorize $5,000 in construction work on the facility before losing a $5,000 grant from the Johnston County Tourism Authority prior to a June 15th deadline.  Work will include window repair, interior brick replacement, truss restoration and removal of a temporary office wall in one corner of the building.

Council members Tommy Holmes and William Overby have previously expressed concerns the Civic Center could become a financial burden on the Town of Selma.  The Town paid $60,000 for the 80 year-old building committee members envision can be transformed into a facility with modern amenities while maintaining historical features. If funds can be secured and the property renovated, the Civic Center would be rented out to businesses and individuals for local events, conferences, meetings, weddings, family reunions, entertainment and more.

Officials believe they can compete against other venues like The Clayton Center and The Farm near Micro.