Town hasn’t given up on quest to buy properties next to hall Hall

By 
KRISTYN HALBIG ZIEHM
Ozaukee Press staff

The Port Wasahington Town Board is continuing its quest to purchase two properties next door to the town hall.

Supr. Mike Didier told the board Oct. 1 that he was forwarding a formal offer to purchase the properties at 3709 and 3703 Highland Dr. via a land contract to Town Atty. Steve Cain for review, after which the offer would be sent to the Gantner family for consideration.

The offer, Didier said, “is essentially the same offer as we originally submitted.”

That offer of $165,000 for the property at 3703 Highland Dr. and $80,000 for the land at 3709 Highland Dr. reflects the price electors approved during the annual meeting in April, he said.

If the town were to offer even $1 more for the properties, it would have to go back to residents for approval of the price, Didier said — something that might prove difficult because he said electors reluctantly agreed to the purchase price in spring.

The offer, which calls for the purchase to be completed by the end of the year, does include an increase in the earnest money to $5,000, something requested by the Gantners, Didier said.

The offer includes some minor changes, he said, such as eliminating a clause in the offer for the property at 3709 Highland Dr. that requires the town to keep it in good repair because the town plans to raze the house on the land and expand its recycling operations there.

“Not tearing it down is not an option for us,” Didier said, adding that because the house is in dilapidated condition “we can make the argument we improved it by tearing it down.”

The other property is currently being leased, and officials said they would continue that lease with an eye toward eventually selling the property for development.

Paul Gantner, one of the property owners, suggested that if the town is serious about buying the two parcels it meet in closed session with the sellers.

The town has been working to acquire the two parcels since last year and reached an agreement with the property owners in spring.

The sale was expected to be completed this summer, but the Gantners terminated the agreement because the town had not paid the earnest money.

Didier said he expects the offer to be forwarded to the Gantner family in the next week or so.

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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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