The Smithfield Town Council unanimously approved extending the lease with the DAV for $1 per year for the next two years. Afterwards, the contract will continue on a month to month basis.
The local DAV chapter has been leasing the building, across from Smithfield Middle School, from the Town for the past six years. The building had at one town housed offices for the Smithfield Parks & Recreation Department.
The building is in need of HVAC and sewer repairs. But before paying for the repairs, DAV officials wanted reassurance from the Town they could continue to stay at the building at the present lease rate.
The Town’s long-range plans for the property include expanding the Smithfield Community Park for either additional field, restrooms, or parking. However, there are no current plans in place for those improvements.
Before his firing, Town Manager Paul Sabiston had recommended the Town Council extend the lease.
The DAV provides free transportation for Veterans to and from VA Clinics and Medical Centers. They also hold PTSD (Psychological Traumatic Stress Disorder) Clinics for Veterans with combat stress, provide assistance with compensation claims, survivor benefit claims, and assists needy Veterans and their families at Thanksgiving and Christmas. The DAV Auxiliary provides assistance to Veterans in nursing homes, hospitals, and hospice, among other services.