Breaking News Bar
posted: 1/8/2013 10:13 AM

Man presses to turn old YMCA into homeless shelter

Success - Article sent! close
Associated Press

BELLEVILLE -- An advocate for the homeless is pressing for Belleville voters to decide whether he can convert the city's former YMCA building into a shelter.

The Rev. Larry Rice on Monday submitted a 790-signature petition to the St. Clair County Clerk's Office to force the ballot measure calling for the city to sell the property to his New Life Evangelistic Center in St. Louis for $1. The Belleville News-Democrat reports the referendum could be on the April 9 municipal ballot if the petitions aren't challenged by Monday.

Belleville Mayor Mark Eckert opposes Rice's plans, believing it would be unfair to business owners.

City leaders say restoring the site vacant since 2006 could cost at least $2 million.

Rice says he could restore the building using volunteer labor and donations.

Share this page
Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.