City of Wyoming notified of new development
The city of Wyoming is no longer the only serious party in the hunt to purchase the vacant RiverBank building.
City Administrator Craig Mattson confirmed on Thursday, July 12 that the city has been notified by a real estate agent representing the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation that the government entity that took possession of the building following the bank failure is seriously considering a second sale possibility.
The name of the second potential buyer has not been made public.
The Wyoming City Council in a 4-1 vote approved a purchase agreement for the building and authorized the issuance of a check for $83,000 to cover 10 percent of the $830,000 negotiated purchase price. The building had an appraised value of $1.2 million.
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The building is tied to a city plan to relocate the city hall to the former bank and convert the existing city hall to a public safety building for fire and police. The city has also authorized a $2.5 capital bond to cover the purchase price of the building and the city hall expansion which is estimated to cost $1.5 million.
“They are currently pursuing that [offer],” Mattson said, referring to the second interested party who has not been revealed.
Mattson said it was not unusual for a seller to have a number of potential buyers and that the seller could well select a buyer offering the best terms for closing the deal.
In the case of the bank building, Mattson said the city is at a disadvantage because it would not have bond funds available until October, meaning the FDIC would have to wait longer to close the sale.
“I don’t know what the other price is,” Mattson said of the second offer. “Whoever is dealing with the FDIC is on a faster track than we are.”
Mattson said the outcome of the second proposal should be known by late in July.
Thursday, July 26 is the deadline for citizens opposed to the bonding plan to produce a valid petition calling for a reverse referendum on the council decision in the November election. The petition process requires the signatures of at least 5 percent of the number of voters who voted in the 2010 general election.
That would mean some 155 signatures of registered voters, Mattson said, specifying that all signers must be currently registered to vote in Wyoming.
On July 26, the council would need to determine if the petition is valid and meeting the requirements for a reverse referendum. To be valid, a petition must contain precise language explaining the opposition to the bonding plan.
At that point, the council could pull back from the bonding plan or order the November ballot to include the question, Mattson said.
Mattson said it is also likely that the council by July 26 should know the status of the bank building sale. “We are still interested,” he said.
Losing the bank building does not mean the city plan is dead, but it would require the council to consider other options.
The plans for the public safety building could move forward. A city study, however, has determined that parking would be inadequate at the current city hall site for a combined city hall/public safety building. That means the city would need to look elsewhere for a city hall site, Mattson said.
The city may be able to do some short-term remodeling on the current city hall site to accommodate city staff, but such an option would not meet long-term needs, Mattson said.