The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

April 3, 2014

Option to purchase land granted

Council split on decision

By Amy Kent
Clinton Herald

CAMANCHE — Less than a month after the Camanche City Council decided to list two lots of city owned property out to the public, an offer has been received.

During a closed session meeting Tuesday, Camanche officials debated on whether to accept an option to purchase one full lot and approximately 48 feet of the second lot from Lighthouse Real Estate LLC for $45,000, with a $1,000 option fee.

The property, which appraised at $85,000, was originally listed for commercial development opportunities and while the details of what its intended use will be has not been released, City Administrator Tom Roth said that possibility is still open.

"The idea was that the city would sell this property for a commercial development," Roth said. "And the pieces are certainly there for that to still be accomplished."

Some members of the council didn't agree with approving the option to purchase, offering up negative votes in the roll call, but were ousted by those who supported the offer on a 3-2 vote.

Roth said the approval of the offer doesn't mean the city will sell the property; instead it guarantees Lighthouse Real Estate LLC an option to purchase the property.

That is if they are able to make an official offer by May 20, the option deadline.

If the deadline is passed the city will still receive the $1,000 payment, but the option will be void and the property will once again become available to potential buyers.

Interest in selling the property has been on the forefront of the council's mind since a March 4 meeting when councilman Bill Wruck suggested they start looking for potential buyers for the property the city purchased in November 2013 for $170,000.

By selling a portion of the land, the city is able to generate some revenue from the sale but also open up the potential for business growth in the community.

"This is a project the council is interested in," Roth said. "(They) think is would be beneficial to the town."