Lakeland Senior Center uninsured when fire destroyed buildingSubmitted: 05/22/2015
WOODRUFF - A few weeks ago, a fire destroyed the Lakeland Senior Center in Woodruff.

We still don't know how the fire started. We do know, however, that the center probably won't receive insurance money to help pay for the rebuilding process, because, at the time of the fire, the center didn't have insurance.

The center apparently failed to pay its premiums, and the insurance company cancelled the policy.

"We were informed by West Bend Insurance, who was our insurance carrier at that time, that coverage had lapsed several weeks prior to that, which was completely unbeknownst to the board," says Lakeland Retirement Foundation Board President Brian Nerdahl. 

The senior center's executive director was responsible for paying the premiums. The executive director has been let go.

Senior center leaders are looking for help from the community as they consider the best way to move forward.

Nerdahl says money will play a big role in the decision-making process.

"Obviously, we're going to change our bill-paying process," he said.. "We have to find out from the community what direction they'd like this center to go. Do we want another building? Do we not want another building? If we do want another building, obviously some fundraising has to be accomplished."

If they rebuild, they might change the kitchen because they no longer make meals at the center.

"We became just an assembly point, so we don't really need a commercial kitchen like we had before," Nerdahl said, "so a lot of things have changed. We need to find out from the community what they would like to see us do."

The center has a temporary home at the Hiawatha Estates Mobile Home Park.

First Merit Bank donated furniture and supplies for the center's temporary office.

Story By: Kaitlyn Howe

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