Ferriday library project on hold

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 1, 2000

FERRIDAY, La. — A $1 million building project at the Ferriday library will have to wait until the Concordia Parish Library Board sees whether it will get $220,215 in taxes from bankrupt Fruit of the Loom.

Bids for the project were originally scheduled to be let in February or March. But delays in getting plans finished for the project pushed the date back to April.

And last week, the board decided to wait to let the project until either Tax Assessor Monelle Moseley or the Concordia Police Jury office tells library officials when, or if, they can expect to receive taxes from Fruit of the Loom, said Parish Librarian Amanda Taylor.

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&uot;The project will still go on, but it will be delayed,&uot;&160;Taylor said of the situation with Fruit of the Loom, parent company of Vidalia Apparel, which is the parish’s largest manufacturer.

The project will renovate 4,500 square feet and add 6,500 square feet to the library, including new shelves for adult fiction and nonfiction, periodicals and educational programs.

It should take 13 to 14 months to complete. The cost will be paid back with proceeds from a 10-year, 8.5-mill property tax voters passed in 1998.

On Friday, a Fruit of the Loom spokesman said the company probably will not pay the more than $2 million in taxes it owes the parish by the May 31 deadline.

Assistant District Attorney Madaline Gibbs is set to investigate what process the Police Jury would need to use to get the $564,000 in taxes the company owes the jury and is scheduled to make a presentation to the jury Feb. 14.

In addition to the library fund, jury funds that would suffer from a delay in getting the taxes include the drainage fund, which would receive $259,077 from Fruit of the Loom; the general fund, which would get $64,992; and the health fund, which operates the Parish Health Unit and would get $20,726.