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Social Circle administrative offices moving this fall
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By the end of 2008, Social Circle's administrative offices will move into an antebellum home in the heart of the city on North Cherokee Road.

City Manager Doug White said the city hall currently in use was built in the mid 1990s.

"It's going to be handed over to our public safety department," White said.

However, he said the idea to move the offices did not stem from a need for more offices for the mayor, city council and city employees.

"Public safety outgrew the fire station," White said.

Approximately eight city offices will relocate to the Hurst-Bouchelle-Hester House, which was built around 1840.

A few years ago the previous owner of the home, Kathleen Hester, died, leaving the home unoccupied. According to White, her two sons resided in metro Atlanta and did not wish to own or maintain the property, so it was placed up for auction.

Approximately two-and-a-half years ago, the city leased the home with an option to purchase it for $240,000.

"They [mayor and council] were looking for something to do with it to keep it from falling into disrepair," White said.

Moving administrative offices to make room for a growing public safety department presented the perfect opportunity.

White said renovation of the home will cost an estimated $350,000, which will be completed by Sam Maloy & Son Contracting out of Monroe. He added funds for the purchase of the home and cost of renovation will come from a portion of the money collected through the city's Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax.

The projected move in date is sometime this fall.

According to White some city business will still occur in the city hall building after the office relocation.

"It's the largest room we own," White said, "so meetings will still be held there."