Belleville has joined the call for vacant schools to be offered to municipalities for $1.
The school closures in many cases result in properties unused for substantial periods of time.
In its letter to the Association of Municipalities of Ontario, the town of Essex says this not only creates an eyesore but often has negative impact on economic development.
Under present regulations the town has to buy the property at fair market value, with taxpayers dollars, and retrofit the building with taxpayers’ dollars.
The Essex report points out the properties were originally purchased and developed as schools, using taxpayer dollars, and should not again have to be paid for at fair market value if they are for the betterment of the community.
Mayor Taso Christopher moved the motion, and city council approved it at a recent meeting, supporting the idea that schools be offered to the local municipality for $1.