The City of Valentine held a special public hearing on October 30th regarding the inter-local agreement for the purchase of the old Shopko building on Highway 20. Not including members of the City Council and other city staff and the media, only 3 people attended the meeting.
There was some discussion between members of the council as to whether it would be more prudent to scrap this project in favor of building a new facility from scratch. Members of the public were concerned as to whether the city needed another wellness center and gym in addition to the old gym and two privately-operated fitness centers. It was also stated that a nursing home may be more appropriate. It was also stated by those in attendance that there was a concern that there may not be room for expansion, nor adequate parking nor adequate hotel and motel rooms available to utilize the facility as a large convention center. Mayor Arganbright stated that it was hoped that the larger conventions may be booked midweek or in the off-season, which could make more hotel rooms available for conventioneers.
The hearing was closed after only 30 minutes, and the council voted to extend the option to purchase the building through December 15, 2023.