Charity still pays rent for restaurant
The Salvation Army may want to earmark some of the money going into its iconic red kettles this Christmas for rent.
Since September, the Army has been paying a monthly rent of $5,240 — more than $20,000 to date — for an empty 4,000-square-foot property where its Warehouse Mission, currently operating in 800 square feet in a back alley, had hoped to offer an expanded range of services.
Responding to community pressure, the Army ditched its plans to rent the abandoned restaurant at 446 Parliament St., where it planned to operate church and adult learning programs, despite signing a three-year lease.
Now there’s a For Lease sign in the window of the former Flamingo House Chinese restaurant — and the staff at the Warehouse Mission are hoping to be able to feed perhaps 50 people in their cramped quarters on Christmas Day.
"This is devastating," said Bonnie Williamson, a volunteer at the Warehouse Mission, some five blocks north. "This is money and power at its worst."