KEYSER - Keyser mayor Damon Tillman questioned Mineral County Historical Foundation representative Frank Roleff about the Alkire Mansion again Wednesday, expressing his concern about handing the building over to the group.

By Liz Beavers
lbeavers@newstribune.info
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - Keyser mayor Damon Tillman questioned Mineral County Historical Foundation representative Frank Roleff about the Alkire Mansion again Wednesday, expressing his concern about handing the building over to the group.
Roleff appeared before the council on June 12 to ask the officials to deed the building over to the foundation as opposed to tearing it down or selling it to someone who will demolish the structure.
The foundation had already completed some renovations of the building, including replacing the windows and front porch and redoing the floors and walls in several rooms on the main floor.
A previous administration pitched in $18,000 for the renovations, and volunteer Leon Ravenscroft said earlier this month that the main floor was “about a week away from being used.”
The work on the mansion stopped, however, when it came out in the News Tribune that it might be sold.
“My holdup with the foundation is, we gave them $18,000 to fix it up. I’m not in favor of giving it to them,” Tillman said Wednesday. “Why would we furnish the $18,000 … and them not have it finished and then say, ‘Hey, why don’t you just give it to us?’“
“I guess the question is, what is the definition of ‘finished,’?” Roleff said, to which Tillman replied, “I guess you’d have to ask the gentleman who came here and told us in December it will be finished.”
Council member Terry Liller suggested they ask for an accountability report on where the $18,000 was used.
“The money’s not in question at all - what the money was spent on. I think from what they’ve done out there, it looks nice,” Tillman said.
“Mr. Roleff, my concern is, you have … the stone House and the Carskadon Mansion, and they’re not finished yet. One’s a flea market and the other one, I don’t see anybody at except maybe at Christmas time.
“And you want to take this one on and I’m afraid that it’s going to get put on the back burner while they try to complete these two, and then get to that one.
“That’s a concern of mine. So, speaking for the city, first of all, the building’s not - it’s NOT - going to be torn down by the city. And if we’d ever sell it to somebody, that would be in our stipulations - that they’d have to maintain it,” Tillman said.
Tillman said he’d like to “open it up for other people to come in and bid on it.
“I think that’s something we need to look at as a council … instead of saying yeah lets just give it to them and have them add it to their repertoire … and they’ll work on it when they can,” he said.
No further action was taken on the mansion.