Goals set for the MTC
February 7, 2019
The 52,861 square foot Moorcroft Town Center (MTC) building was attained by the Moorcroft Town Council in September of 2016 and met with mixed feelings about the fiscal feasibility of the proposed repurposing by the public.
After two years, this controversial entity is, with the concentrated efforts of volunteers, slowly growing into the communal asset first envisioned by the governing body.
The volunteers who are working for the advancement of the Moorcroft Town Council (MTC) this year include MTC board chairman Nancy Feehan, treasurer Charlie Britton, Secretary Andrea Wood, and members Michael Peterson, Aaron Jordon, Lisa Lovett and Dan Blakeman.
Acknowledging the slow progress, the council and volunteers have been diligent in their efforts to make the building pay for itself, and are determined to facilitate bringing the MTC further into a beneficial position with the community in 2019.
With this in mind, Feehan shares several targets already met and others on which the board is currently working.
At this time, the building houses The Starfish Second Hand Store, run by volunteers and “owned” by the town; Bear Lodge Rehabilitation; Weston County Developmental Children’s Center; Adult GED, sponsored by Eastern Wyoming College; Girl Scouts of America; department of agriculture; and the Secret Squirrel Brigade. The community gardens have also been well attended since their inception three years ago.
According to Clerk/Treasurer Cheryl Schneider, while the town budgeted $75,000 in the 2018/2019 fiscal year to subsidize the MTC, with the rentals and the sale of all of the security fobs for the gymnasium as well as ever higher proceeds brought in by the second hand store, “The revenues are growing by leaps and bounds.”
The Secret Squirrel Brigade, a group of high school youths under advisor Andrea Wood, work with the town council to facilitate innovative kid friendly areas around town. They have two rooms within the MTC dedicated to providing a safe environment for youngsters to gather and have fun and have been working on the rooms for almost a year. Wood reports that they, “are coming together with a lot of hard work, grants and donations”.
The brigade and board will be having an open house with refreshments on March 19 at 6 p.m. The newly improved weight room, filled with a myriad of exercise machines will also be on show at the open house.
Other upcoming goals for the MTC include the renovation of the janitor’s room into a laundry room for use by Starfish Second Hand Store, The Secret Squirrel Brigade and those caring for the building. A new washer and dryer have already been donated and will be used for the MTC.
The reason for this, according to Feehan, is that there are students who do not have access to laundry or lack the funds with which to use the public laundromat and the second hand store occasionally needs to wash certain items as well.
The board is planning to create a conference room to be available for rent to businesses. Painting the cafeteria and overhauling the kitchen are among the short term goals as well as the purchase of more chairs and tables for events.
The team also wants to establish a show room.
“If somebody wants to look at the building for an office or whatever,” says Feehan, “We want to get one room set up as a show room. It can also be used by the community.”
A sound system is on the short term goal list, too. The major items on the long term list are replacing windows and installing air conditioning.
The board will be selling several items that can be repurposed or perhaps saved as memorabilia, including the lockers from the halls. More information about sale items can be obtained from one of the board members.
The MTC board is seeking funding sources and, according to Feehan, there are a few grants available for which they are applying; these and private donations are the reason these plans can be brought to fruition. They are currently putting together a brochure about their plans for the future of the building to be sent with a letter to area businesses.
The MTC has received a grant to replace the existing lights in the gymnasium with LED. This was a 90/10 percent grant, meaning that the funding equaled 90 percent of the total and, in this case, the brigade supplied the ten percent domestic investment. The installation will soon be advertised for bid, according to Feehan.
After the inception of the MTC board last year, they drafted and presented an operations and procedures manual to the governing body and are currently awaiting approval. Feehan advised that the manual will be discussed at a workshop on February 25.