Members of Hamburg Economic Development Team told Ashley County Quorum Court that they want to use a county-owned building to house a health center for the eastern end of the county, but the process can’t move forward without a nod from Little Rock.

Economic Development Team members Inez Barnes and Leslie Foote appeared before justices of the peace to discuss their plans to locate the health center in the old True Value Building next to the county equipment yard.

Barnes said the project is being done in collaboration with Ashley County Medical Center, which already has an exercise-based wellness center in Crossett. People in the eastern end of the county would use such a center in Hamburg if it was available, she said, including a number of ACMC employees who live in the area.

If the project can move forward, the HEDT will improve the building, which will need significant remodeling to serve the purpose, Barnes said. It will need ceilings installed, as well as walls in some places, and in some places mirrors will be installed similar to what one sees in gyms.

“Everybody can gain from this,” she said. “I think it is a good proposal, a fair use proposal.”

Barnes said the big holdup at the moment is that the HEDT is waiting for an opinion from the state attorney general’s office to make sure the arrangement between the group and county can be made. That’s why they were addressing the quorum court, she said.

“We are trying to clear the path just so that if it does go through, everybody will know what we are trying to do,” Barnes said.

Justice of the Peace Ron Miller said he thought the idea is a really good proposal.

“It has been my focus for two years, but every time I get it moving we have to stop,” Barnes said.

For more information on what the HEDT is doing, sit