HALEYVILLE, Ala. (WIAT) -- For many of us, dialing 9-1-1 is the first step we take in an emergency. Any time a rescue team responds to an emergency, their ability to be there within minutes dates back to 1968 to Haleyville City Hall.
Valeria Taylor is proud of her town and the people who created the first 9-1-1 system in the country.
"If you think about all the people out there that have picked up the phone in times of emergency, fear," Valeria says, "And dialed 9-1-1, it gave them hope."
The City Hall represents hope to Valeria, but she says her city leaders think it's a waste of money. They want to tear it down and replace it with a new CVS Pharmacy.
"That is horrible," Valeria says, "I don't know. There are so many words that could describe it."
But Valeria isn't the kind of person who sits on the sidelines. She is taking her concerns to the people of Haleyville at the local Save-A-Lot. She's collecting signatures on a petition to save the building, which she will present to the city council Monday.
Haleyville Mayor Ken Sunseri says the city did not recruit CVS, but was approached by the company with what he calls a "significant offer" to purchase the land. He says that offer comes at a crucial time as the 60-year-old facility needs a lot of work.
"We've had numerous problems with leaks. We have an outdated air conditioning and heating system," Sunseri says. "We also have numerous electrical wiring throughout the building that needs to be replaced. To modernize the building we figured it would take between $900,000 and $1 million dollars."
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