Now that the new animal services building on the north side of Squaw Prairie Road is finished, Boone County officials are ready to sell the old one at 1230 S. Appleton Road.

After quite a bit of discussion, the county board voted 12-0 to open the process up to public bids, with no minimum dollar amount required. The board maintained the right to accept or refuse any and all offers.

County Administrator Ken Terrinoni explained there were a number of avenues that could be pursued with regard to the sale. One would be a negotiated sale with an interested buyer and see what price can be agreed upon. The other would be the bid process.

He said the roads and capital improvements committee, which considered that issue, was divided over the best way to get the most for taxpayers.

“It was felt the [full county] board should weigh in on it,” he said.

Committee Chairman Brad Stark said he was adamant at the committee level about putting the sale out to bid.

“I think this is the most open way we can go about selling this surplus property,” Stark said.

Board member Cathy Ward agreed, saying, “We should open it up to everyone in the county who might be interested.”

Another board member, Sherry Giesecke, wondered about setting a minimum bid for the property.

Board Chairman Karl Johnson said the committee did not like that approach.

“There will be plenty out there who will try to buy something for nothing,” board member Jeff Carlisle said.

Another viewpoint came from newly elected board member, Dr. Bernard O’Malley.

“This is a special use type of property and a small number of people will be interested in it,” O’Malley said. “It needs a lot of work.”

However, Stark countered the notion expressed earlier that this property would sell for $1 or $10, was “quite silly. Mr. O’Malley thinks the property needs work. Well, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Somebody might like it just the way it is. Somebody might buy it for the land. We don’t know. As the seller, we shouldn’t be running down our piece of property. I think it’s quite beautiful, myself. It doesn’t eat, and we don’t have to clean up after it. So, if it takes a while to sell, so be it.”

Committee Vice Chairman Denny Ellingson said there already had been some inquiries about the property.

A motion to open the Appleton Road property to public bid was authored by board member Marshall Newhouse and seconded by Ward. It was approved, 10-2, in a voice vote.

In related action, the board voted 12-0 to make a final payment of $87,426.30 to Rockford Structures Construction Company in Machesney Park, for general construction of the 3,300-square-foot animal services building.

Overall, this was an estimated $1.040-million project financed by the sale of $800,000 in bonds that voters approved Nov. 4, 2014.

The general fund will be reimbursed $251,781.93. It is supplying to make up the difference.

Some of the big-ticket items shown in the contract breakdown were rough carpentry/lumber, $150,411.76; site work, $82,100; electrical, $76,064; overhead and profit, $68,359.30; $57,362; concrete/concrete systems, $62,794; HVAC, $57,362; gutters, downspouts, siding, $42,269.30; painting/epoxy, $29,419; doors, hardware, $27,880; drywall, $24,416; and roofing, $20,450.

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