(NASHVILLE) April 4, 2018 – The City of LaFollette will receive $50,000 to preserve the historic LaFollette Post Office under an appropriation amendment added to the state budget at the request of Senator Ken Yager (R-Kingston). The legislation, which also passed the House of Representatives, is set to become law upon the signature of Governor Bill Haslam.
The $50,000 budget appropriation is in addition to a $50,000 Asset Enhancement Grant from the Department of Economic and Community Development (ECD). This grant was made possible by the Rural Economic Opportunity Act passed by the General Assembly in 2016 and co-sponsored by Yager.
The City of LaFollette has turned over the 1950’s era post office to a group of citizens called Postmark LaFollette for it to be used as a center for the arts.
“I was very impressed when I visited with the volunteers of Postmark LaFollette and toured the post office over a year ago,” said Senator Yager. “Their interest in preserving the arts is admirable, and I was happy to be able to find these funds, which will ensure Postmark LaFollette has the resources needed to properly restore the post office to its original state. I strongly support historic preservation. It is a real asset to the community, and will continue to do all I can to help.”
“I want to thank State Representative Dennis Powers for his support in the House to help attain these funds, as well as Mayor Mike Stanfield for allowing me to participate in this process. The funding would not have been possible without them,” added Yager.
The LaFollette Post Office is in need of a new roof and restored windows. The first $50,000 grant from ECD will cover the cost of a new roof, but funding was still needed to properly restore the windows. The budget appropriation will help the structure meet the criteria in order to have it placed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The money for this project will be available July 1, 2018.