Council looks into options for future of Compadres building

City Council
By: 
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

The City of Monticello is considering its options when it comes to the former Compadres Building. 

The city council approved spending $3,000 for a cost estimate on the potential demolition of the building. This decision came during the Nov. 4 council meeting. 

City Administrator Doug Herman said once the council has the demolition cost estimate in hand, they can decide if they want to move ahead with demolition or rehabilitation. 

Jones County Economic Development Director Derek Lumsden shared several sources of state and federal grants at the council’s disposal to assist in rehabbing the building. 

To date, the city has acquired the property, performed a phase-one environmental evaluation on the building, and had it inspected for asbestos. The asbestos has not been removed, though. 

While the building is in poor condition, Herman said a building inspection showed that there’s no concern with the building failing as a whole. There could be some issues with demolition when it comes to the adjacent buildings as well. 

In addition to rehabbing the first-floor, Lumsden also encouraged the council to consider grants to rehab the second story for housing opportunities. 

“You can get the building back on the tax roll and useful again,” he said. 

Herman felt the Derelict Building Program through the DNR would be the perfect fit the Compadres building, which offers up to $50,000 for rehab projects. 

Council member Tom Yeoman inquired about getting an estimate for rehabilitation. Herman said he didn’t know of any local contractors who would be interested in even putting such a figure together, especially considering the L-shape of the building. 

“It would need to be relatively detailed,” continued Herman. 

Yeoman suggested that the building could be separated into two different structures, as well, for future projects.

In other city business: 

• The council approved the seventh pay request from Horsfield Construction in the amount of $187,369.45 for work on the N. Sycamore Street Project. 

AJ Barry with Snyder & Associates gave an update on the project. He said some change orders remain after the contractor installed additional sidewalk, driveways and utility work. Some of that work will also be assessed to the property owners. All of the paving is now complete. 

Horsfield is working on replacing the topsoil, starting near First Street, working north. 

Some street signage has been installed, with the rest to go up at the end of this week and the beginning of next week. 

“We are well ahead of the Nov. 21 completion date,” said Barry. 

All that would remain is a walk-through of the project and a final punch-list of items remaining, if any. 

Council member Brenda Hanken asked about how residents could acquire trees. Herman said the Tree Board would work with the city and residents on the particulars of where to plant tress, and which type of tree is best suited. 

• The last day the city will pick up yard waste is Thursday, Nov. 21. 

• The council reaffirmed its previous approval of the submission of a USDA grant in the amount of $110,000 to assist in the purchase of a new ambulance. The total estimated cost is $210,000. The city’s cost share would be $75,000, with $25,000 coming from the MEMT (Monticello Emergency Medical Team). 

The council also set a public information meeting on the grant submission, as required, for Nov. 18 at 6 p.m. during the regular council meeting. 

• The council approved the FY 2018-19 Annual Financial Report. 

The ending fund balance of all funds combined came to $3,637,728 on July 1, 2018; and $5,616,016 on July 1, 2019. 

• The council approved the FY 2018-19 Annual Urban Renewal Report. 

As of June 30, 2019, the city’s unrestricted TIF balance was $285,591; and $14,826 of restricted funds. 

The restricted funds are produced from the Breckenridge Addition TIF area, and can only be used for low-to-moderate housing projects. One example on dispersing the funds would be second-story housing in the downtown district. 

Category:

Subscriber Login