School district finalizes purchase of Church of Wells building

WELLS, TX (KTRE) - Earlier this month, the Wells Independent School District finalized its purchase of the Church of Wells building and two city lots at the corner of 4th and Bonita Streets.

According to a press release from Wells ISD, the district bought the building at two lost for $26,000.  The property had an appraised value of about $32,000 with the Cherokee County Appraisal District.

"The purchase of this property will help us create of additional parking and will expand the security perimeter around the school campus," the press release stated.

Prior to the district's decision to purchase the house and property, it had been used as a place of worship by the church's members. The building will be demolished, and the property will be used to create new parking for Wells ISD.

"Currently, our construction project across the street is being built on our parking lot, so we need additional parking," Wells ISD Superintendent Dale Morton said in a previous East News story. "With this property we will be able to create staff parking and parent parking for our elementary campus."

Dr. Cynthia Williams, of Houston, sold the property to the school district.

In a previous interview with KTRE, Williams said she originally purchased the building earlier in 2013 for her daughter and son-in-law, who were listed on the Church of Wells Web site. They were paying a mortgage, so that they would eventually own the home. Williams says that her daughter has since left the church, but her son-in-law is still living in that home. She said she was planning on putting the house up for sale after the first of the year.

Representatives of the Church of Wells declined an on camera comment but sent out a text message which said,"We do not desire to be involved with the media at this time."

Morton said the district's decision to purchase the building and two city lots after a thorough review of security and emergency operations plans with members of the community and county and regional emergency agencies. Creation of additional parking and expansion of a secure perimeter around the school campus were two priorities which emerged from the study.

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