In turn, Halifax County commissioners this evening agreed to advertise Isles’s intent to purchase the building. That notice also paves the way for the start of an upset bid process and spells out Isles is seeking a three-year lease with option to buy.
While commissioners agreed to advertise the notice, it is not a binding agreement on the sale of the building to Isles. The county is also in the process of obtaining an appraisal of the facility as well as seeing what the status of previous grant funds associated with the building are.
Commissioners deliberated whether the notice should spell out a two-year or three-year lease.
“This building hasn’t got us a dime,” Commissioner Marcelle Smith said. “If it takes him three years I’m willing to go three years. I inherited this when I came on the board.”
Commissioner Linda Brewer agreed. “At some point you have to move on and cut your losses.”
Halifax Economic Development Director Cathy Scott told the board the move to the building, which is located off Littleton’s Main Street, has the potential to allow Isles to expand his business to 20 to 25 new employees.
Isles told the board he began his business in 1974. “I looked at the building years ago. We do everything, we do everything to a car.”
Currently his business employs eight people but should he be able to buy the building he would like to expand to work not only on cars, but stock a full auto parts store in the building as well as look at options for recycling.
Isles said he looks at the potential purchase as an investment for his family. “I’m trying to build a better future for my son.”
Scott said the Littleton town board supports the purchase. “I believe the mayor called Mr. Isles and offered support.”