Street people using them as convenient places to relieve themselves out of public view are ruining shrubbery at the Raleigh County Courthouse.

As a result, the county commission is seeking bids to replace the greenery that encircles the stone structure.

Offers to perform landscaping on the courthouse must be sealed, marked “LAWN,” and in the hands of the commission no later than 4 p.m. on June 5.

“I can assure the public we’re not cutting any trees down,” emphasized Commission President John Aliff.

Some time ago, the commission let the ax fall on a couple of trees, and a few folks howled about their removal, despite the need for some corrective surgery, Aliff recalled.

“That was the best thing that ever happened,” he said.

“We had trees growing into the sewer system and growing right into the building. The building was being eaten up with mold. It was the proper thing to do.”

Sandblasting of the courthouse caused some damage to the shrubbery, Aliff said, and loafers are exacerbating the problem by urinating on it.

“It’s turning yellow,” Aliff said. “That’s why we decided to get some bids on replacing some of that stuff. So we’re going to look at the bids when they come in and see whether it’s the correct thing to do and whether we can afford it.”

Aliff said the commission would seek the advice of bidders on how to protect the shrubbery from homeless people who are relieving themselves on the shrubbery. One solution might be plant the new shrubs farther away from the building, he indicated.

“We don’t want any more bathroom use there,” Aliff added.

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