Lions Club

The building that was donated to the city by the Lions Club.

BENSON — After serving the community for 70 years, the Benson Lions Club closed its doors, with the City of Benson benefiting from the closure.

The Benson Lions Club Foundation donated its building at 599 S. Dragoon St. to the city effective Jan. 1. On Monday, the city held its first council meeting in its new building.

Called as a special meeting, Mayor Joe Konrad was sworn in by Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels, along with council members Patrick Boyle, Nick Maldonado, Larry Dempster and Toney King, former mayor of Benson who will now be serving on the city council.

“We’re absolutely thrilled with this building,” City Manager Vicki Vivian said in an October interview when she learned about the donation. “This is just an amazing opportunity for the city.”

The 3,200-square-foot building comes with a common room capable of holding 287 people, a fully equipped commercial kitchen, pantry and office, as well as two fully equipped Americans with Disabilities Act compliant bathrooms. The property has a large, paved parking lot and a storage building out the back door.

“As Benson continues to grow, there are multiple uses this building could provide the city,” Vivian said.

The building, which is about 12 years old, has been well maintained and is in excellent condition.

Future Benson city council meetings, slated for the second and fourth Monday of every month, will be held at the building until a new city hall is constructed.