Debate about rebuilding Lincoln Co. grandstand - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Debate about rebuilding Lincoln Co. grandstand


A debate is raging about whether to rebuild the grandstand at the Lincoln County Fairgrounds. Storms damaged the structure last summer and it was torn down.

Now, a Lincoln County board member said the insurance money could be better spent elsewhere.

A month ago, the county settled an insurance claim for $1.3 million.

Now, board members said that money, originally set to replace the grandstand, is at the center of debate.

Last June, the grandstand at the Lincoln County Fairgrounds was badly damaged from high winds and storms. It was eventually torn down.

"The insurance settlement paid for the demolition of the old grandstand and replacement value of the new grandstand," said Robert Weaver, County Supervisor.

Some Lincoln County board members question if it makes sense to replace it.

Weaver is one of them.

"My top priority would be to retire some of the debt and thereby benefit all the taxpayers in the county," said Weaver.

But building a new grandstand has plenty of support.

"The people in my district want the grandstand replaced as it was or similar to it and that's my position," said Carl Vander Sanden, County Supervisor.

The board reached a $1.3 million settlement with its insurance company last month.

Weaver said there are more effective ways to spend it and presented a resolution to the board.

"There are some of us who feel very strongly that there are very basic unmet needs in the county and there should be other uses for that money," said Weaver.

The county has already taken bids to replace the grandstand.

Board members said those expire in November.

"We really haven't had a group come forward and say we have a use for this grandstand," said Weaver.

"I'm familiar with what goes on in Shawano County as well as Langlade County and I know that those facilities get used almost weekly," said Vander Sanden.

But both sides said there's still a lot of discussion ahead.

County board members said the debate will continue next week.

Robert Weaver's resolution will be presented to another Lincoln County board committee on Monday.

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