In exchange for a half-acre tract of land along Springfield Road for the city to construct a new connector road with Old Highway 19 around the planned LSC Communications plant, John Paul and Nancy …
In exchange for a half-acre tract of land along Springfield Road for the city to construct a new connector road with Old Highway 19 around the planned LSC Communications plant, John Paul and Nancy Quick will receive three tracts of land along North Second including the old city building currently serving as a police station.
Owensville aldermen following a 45-minute closed session July 30, voted 3-1 to enter into an agreement with the Quicks and LSC Communication through approval of Ordinance No. 1337. The 25-page agreement spells out the responsibilities of the city, LSC Communications US, LLC, and the Quicks to develop a connecting road across the Quick’s land and a section of Industrial Drive LSC is helping construct south of their proposed building site.
The Quicks will receive in exchange for their land a small tract of ground behind the current City Hall building bordering Second and McFadden along with a tract behind the current police station and adjacent to the old Rock Island railroad bed. The Quicks will also receive the current police station building which was once used as the city’s meeting and office space and the fire department’s meeting room.
The building currently housing the city’s emergency management office — previously used as a library and as the city’s dispatching and communications center — is not included in the tract going to the Quicks.
The Quicks will also have the “irrevocable right of first refusal” to match a bid should city officials in the future decide to vacate the existing City Hall office and meeting room building which was once an MFA Exchange building. This “inducement” is available up to five years from the signing of this agreement.
In addition to that building, the Quicks negotiated the opportunity to have the right of first refusal to match a bid the city might receive within two years for the purchase of the old 1938 electric plant building and remaining ground at the corner of Marvin and Cuba.
Ward 1 Aldermen Cathy Lahmeyer was the lone dissenting vote when the Board of Aldermen returned to open session. She read a prepared statement into the record voicing a reportedly emotional concern over the negotiation process and final outcome.
“First, I totally have and will continue to support LSC and the citizens’ request for a permanent solution to Springfield Road continuing north of town,” Lahmeyer began. “I also support Jahabow in their need for access along Industrial Drive and believe it should also be a permanent roadway.
“That being said, I’ve participated in all the scheduled meetings for the purpose of Real Estate for this project and have seen several become ‘11th hour/back to the wall’ pressure decisions. It became abundantly clear to me that we were not in a negotiation over property, but responding to an ever-increasing demand for more property, without knowing current market value.
“In the end, I feel the City is losing far too much property in exchange for a tiny (.5 acre) parcel of land to accommodate a permanent road. I feel that long term, the city and taxpayers will suffer due to the certain self-interests, lack of community spirit, teamwork and cohesiveness for our greater good.”
The Republican was told the city was waiting for a final legal description on the parcels involved to know exactly how much land the city was giving up.
The Quicks both signed off on the agreement Friday afternoon along with Mayor John Kamler. LSC officials locally were having the agreement passed one final time through their legal counsel, Kamler told aldermen on Monday. As of late Tuesday afternoon LSC officials locally had not signed the agreement.