TRANSFER, Pa. (WKBN)- It’s been one year since the Humane Society of Mercer County was donated a new building for just one dollar.
While grateful for the gift, it turns out the building came with more problems than they expected.
“It came to the point that we bought the building for roughly $50,000,” said Paul Tobin, Mercer County humane agent.
There are issues with the building such as infrastructure, electric and plumbing. It’s still a good piece of property with 23,000 square feet on 10 acres of land, but it’s money they could have spent elsewhere and it’s just the start of what they’ll have to spend to get the building where they need it to be.
“This is a million-dollar project,” Tobin said.
A year ago, the building had heavy damage in almost every area. Floors needed fixed, ceilings had holes in them and the roof needed to be repaired. They’ve already put around $70,000 of donation money into it. Now, they’re weighing their options, can they salvage it or do they tear it down and start brand new?
“We are doing what we can with the space as far as to kennel animals and have them here,” Tobin said. “It’s all going to boil down to money. If we think we can keep the structure up and if it would be safe -we’d love to.”
Tobin said there are a lot of people in the community that don’t want to see the building torn down since it was the old Transfer Elementary School. He said bringing in other agencies to share the space would help, financially.
“It would be great to have a lot of entities doing the same job, just different aspects of the same building. We’re just not sure that it is going to be possible out of this current building,” Tobin said.
Right now, only four rooms are usable in the building.
WKBN First News received several calls into our newsroom about the project. A contractor who worked on the building said that the humane society was aware of the state of the building when it accepted the donation.
WKBN 27 First News will continue to follow this developing story.