The Marion City Council agreed at its Dec. 10 meeting not to accept bids for the city-owned Arlie’s Paint Body &?Glass building and land for under $200,000.
The unanimous decision came after Mayor Mary Olson asked City Administrator Doug Kjellin of he had anything new to report on the property.
“Nothing is on the (Dec. 10) agenda,” Kjellin said, adding that perhaps Barry Linnens, president and owner of Cottonwood Valley State Bank, who was present at the meeting, would like to talk about it.
Kjellin said, “We still have an offer on the table (of $130,000 in cash and no financing). If we can’t come to an agreement on the lease purchase or outright cash purchase of the building agreement then (Linnens) will be under a time constraint to do something with the contents within the building.”
Kjellin asked Linnens if it would be favorable for the city to say whether it is interested in the offer of $130,000 so the bank could pursue it.
“Our position is we wanted to try and package this to benefit everyone in the community,” Linnens said. “It would behoove everybody to try to do this as a unit because once you have an empty building, you have an empty building—it is just part of the market.”
Olson asked if Kjellin and Linnens were working together on this.
“Not necessarily,” Linnens said.
Kjellin said the problem is the building is on municipal ground and he cannot quote figures because it would be negotiating ground owned by the city.
Kjellin said all he told Linnens was the city will need to refinance this in June 2013.
Linnens said this is difficult for everyone and Kjellin has done what he can.
“From the aspect of trying to sell this property—when an interested party says, ‘What will it take to buy it?’ we don’t know.”
If someone wants to pay the full price of $237,000, he said, that would work, but no one has offered it.
Kjellin wanted to make it clear that the city’s interest is the land and building only.
After listening to the discussion, Councilor Todd Heitschmidt made the motion that the city should not consider anything less than $200,000 for the building.