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Town of Morristown considers buying St. John’s Parish Center

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MORRISTOWN - As St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church considers purchasing the former United Methodist Church building, the church may have found a buyer for its empty perish center: the town of Morristown.

The Rev. Jay W. Seymour, pastor at St. John’s, said the church would not purchase the Methodist building without putting its current parish center on the market.

Vacant since August 2013, the Methodist building at 504 Gouverneur St. is closer to the Catholic Church building, located at 506 Gouverneur St., than its current parish center at 500 Morris St.

“There are benefits to both locations, and we just want to make sure we make the right decision,” Rev. Seymour said.

A lot of research is yet to come before any decisions are made. Rev. Seymour said the church needs to inspect the vacant Methodist building, which is being marketed at $130,000, to ensure it is suitable for its needs. He said he expects the building inspection to happen in the next few weeks.

“There is no time pressure in this regard,” he said.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Ogdensburg may already have a buyer for the parish center.

Town Supervisor Frank L. Putman said the town council plans on looking at the building to determine if it would work as a new town hall.

Mr. Putman said the town wants to get the building appraised and get a feel for how much work would need to be done to convert it to a suitable office layout.

“Everything is on the table as far as I’m concerned,” Mr. Putman said.

No price has been established for the sale of the building, though Mr. Putman said the church floated a $200,000 price.

“That’s okay,” he said. “They can think whatever they want [for a price]. We would need to get an appraisal done of the property.”

Village Mayor Cheryl A. Shatraw said if the town went ahead with the purchase of the building the village would move its offices as well and rent from the town.

The village currently rents office space from the town at 604 Main St. Mrs. Shatraw said the building is in tough shape.

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