Thanks, but no thanks, say Egremont residents about church ‘donation’

(Hannah Shirley) The First Congregational Church of So. Egremont.

EGREMONT — The congregation of the First Congregational Church of South Egremont had hoped to donate the historic church building to the town for use as a community center, but after underwhelming reception from the community, the congregation decided to withdraw the donation from the town warrant.

The congregation’s decision comes after a disappointing turnout to their April 7 open house, where church board member Charlie Proctor said many residents expressed concerns about accepting the donation.

“It wasn’t very positive, let’s put it that way,” Proctor said.

Proctor said the church board has been divided over what to do with the warrant item for about a month, since Susan Bachelder wrote a letter for the Egremont News on behalf of the town’s Historical Commission requesting the congregation withdraw the warrant article, citing questions about the tax burden on residents and the lack of a historical engineering report done on the building.

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