FLINT, Michigan (WJRT) A big night at City Hall, concerns over the future of the location of the Hasselbring Senior Center took center stage at the Flint City Cuoncil meeting, and council members also approved the Mott Foundation Grant money.
ABC 12's Amy Hybels attended the City Hall meeting where dancing seniors took over the meeting to draw attention to the importance of securing a new lease at their current location.
The 'Hasselbring Hustlers' bust a move shortly after the first city council meeting of 2017 was gaveled into session...a strategy to draw attention to the Senior Center's need for a new lease at their current location after the Board of Directors at the Center rejected the City of Flint's lease offer of 750 dollars a month. The Center had been renting the building from the city for one dollar a year and in a brief telephone conversation with Board President Percy Knapp ABC 12 news was told that ''we're not able to pay that."
Seniors who consider the center an important part of their life implored the board to come up with a solution:
"Flint is my Florida...I want that center to stay open, we all do," remarked Senior Judi Greenridge.
Senior Bunny Jones told the full council, "we've got 80 year old people dancing...we're asking for the community to come together to help Hasselbring."
The treasurer of the Board of Directors also spoke out at tonight's meeting in an attempt to address complaints of money being mis-managed by the Senior Center: "I would like to publicly state that there is no evidence that any money has been mismanaged," said Norma Allen.
Councilman Eric Mays, who represents Ward 1 where the Senior Center is located said his greatest concern is that they find a solution:
"The center is not in real jeopardy of closing," he explained, "but the management of the center is what's being debated, so we hope to get that straightened out and we hope to keep all activities at that location at that center."
We've also learned that the Flint City Council voted to accept the Mott Foundation grant after some initial hesitation. The $417,000 will provide funding to hire a grant writer, hire a search company to fill the water plant supervisor position, and increase the salary offered for the Director of Public Works.