City Council will sell Jackson Street property

Steven Barnum , News editor



The Macomb City Council finalized a deal to sell a dilapidated building on the square.

City Administrator Dean Torreson previously talked about the poor condition of the structure, which is located at 133 W Jackson St. The city of Macomb only owns one-half of the building but city officials are also planning to buy the other half. The council approved an ordinance that would allow Mayor Mike Inman to act as an agent and sell the building to local businessman Chris Trotter.

Trotter said that he will make the building available for rent after he completes the necessary renovations, which include a new roof. The deal will be for $3,000, which City Attorney Kristen Petrie said is more than 80 percent of the appraised value. Trotter submitted an application for the Downtown Renovation Grant Program, which could award him an extra $20,000 toward the improvement project.

Alderman Annette Carper abstained from the vote and the rest of the council unanimously agreed to finalize the transaction. Inman casted a rare vote, which he said is because he has the authority to do so when an ordinance involves real estate matters. The agreement also included plans to use TIF (Tax Increment Financing) money to help fund the project. The city decided that the building is more valuable in Trotter’s hands.

“This particular property is no longer deemed as useful or a benefit to the city,” Petrie said.

Elsewhere, the council authorized the replacement of vehicles in the public works department. The department will purchase a 2018 Ford F150 and a 2018 Ford F550 for a combined total of $90,000. They will replace a 2006 Ford F150 and a 2009 Ford F250, both of which have about 100,000 miles on the odometer.

“Keep in mind, these are city miles with a great deal of idle time,” Torreson said, “so they are certainly in need of being replaced.”

Since the city purchased fewer replacement water meters than expected, there is $100,000 available in the leftover fund to pay for the trucks.

The council also agreed to Macomb Police Chief Curt Barker’s request to add a Ford F150 to his department. With the equipment that the department needs, the listing price of the vehicle is $33,000. Barker said that Woodrum Ford Lincoln in Macomb would match the price, which would also allow him to support a local business.

“I like to stay local as much as we can,” Barker said. The purchase was part of the 2018/2019 budget, according to Barker, and the funding will be coming out of the police protection fund.

Looking ahead to next week’s committee of the whole meeting, city officials will continue a discussion on allowing the sale of packaged alcohol on Sundays. Introduced to the public in late February, Hy-Vee Store Director Melissa Worley is trying to pave the way for an amendment to the Class “P” Liquor License. If approved, Macomb businesses would be able to sell liquor, excluding kegs, from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Sundays.