By David Howell
WATER VALLEY County officials are close to inking a deal with Carothers Construction that would transfer three buildings and six acres that make up their headquarters to Yalobusha County. The property is located on old Hwy. 7, just south of Water Valley.
“We have talked to the county for over a year,” Company Owner Sean Carothers said about his company’s donation, when contacted by the Herald Tuesday. Carothers also said construction had started on the company’s new location, which will be in southern Lafayette County.
The property that will be donated to the county includes the office building and the building next to it, known as the old Earl Carothers home, and a huge garage immediately east of the house.
Details of the transaction have been discussed in executive session in previous months, as county officials worked with Carothers Construction to iron out the details. Board Attorney John Crow said the property transfer will likely take effect before the end of the year.
“They are also donating approximately four acres immediately to the south of all those structures,” Crow said.
“They are going to obviously need time to build a new building, they have agreed to lease back the property,” Crow said about the tentative transaction.
In the agreement explained during the Sept. 2 supervisor meeting in Coffeeville, the county will actually purchase four of the six acres in the transaction. The lease fees paid to the county by Carothers to continue using the facility during the construction process after the deal is signed is expect to offset the price of the four acres.
“They receive benefit, I’m sure, from the donations,” Crows said. “We are grateful for Sean Carothers and the rest of the people at Carothers Construction for doing this for the benefit of the citizens of the county.”
Crow said they are waiting on one item as far as an appraisal is concerned.
“I guess you can say the deal is done, there will be an agreement as far as what our responsibilities are and what their responsibilities are,” the attorney added.
“It is a bittersweet situation for the county,” Supervisor Vaughn said. “Knowing that Mr. Earl started that business in Yalobusha County many years ago. Followed up by Arnold Wayne and then Sean.”
They elected to stay in Yalobusha all of these years when they probably would have been better served in another community”, Vaughn said.
“We hate to see them go, they have been an asset to the county for well over 50 years,” Vaughn continued. “This gift is something we are truly grateful for. It is going to be a tremendous benefit for Yalobusha County. We have got departments needing places to go, places to store equipment,” Vaughn continued.
“By the same token, we hate to see them go, but we wish them well. We wish they would stay. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve said that to them. I have begged them, but they have made up their minds and they know what they need to do,” Vaughn said.
“We are very appreciative of this gift,” Vaughn added, summing up the conversation about the deal.