Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Council to Purchase Former Dean Clinic Building for Police Station

At their regularly scheduled budget workshop, the City of Milton Common Council voted in open session to approve an agreement to purchase the former Dean Clinic building and an adjacent parcel of property for the purposes of relocating the Police Department. The accepted agreement provides for the city to receive the building with 1.3 acres of land as well as an adjacent parcel of .62 acres of land owned by Dean, assessed at a total of $910,500, for a purchase price of $300,000. The terms of the agreement also included the city’s payment of Dean’s annual property taxes on both properties, bringing the city’s total estimated expense to $322,000. The Council’s intention is to utilize the building and land to relocate the police department and municipal court operations.

The Milton Common Council began exploring the feasibility of the former Dean Clinic building and took a tour of the facility as it sought to address police department facility needs in August of 2012, after the results of a Burdick Building feasibility study for a joint municipal service center showed that expenses related to that project were too expensive for taxpayers to afford. The negotiation process came to a conclusion early this week, and the agreement to purchase the property was approved by the Council in open session on Tuesday night. In due diligence work done prior to making the City’s initial offer to purchase, General Engineering contractors and City staff examined the facility and determined that the project’s preliminary renovation costs for the project were estimated to be in the range of $1.2-1.8 million or approximately ½ to 2/3 the cost of building a new building. Total project cost will depend upon the size and scope of proposed renovations and will ultimately be subject to final approval by the City of Milton Common Council.

Prior to making an offer, City staff prepared financing options for the Council to consider related to the purchase of the building, which included the possible use of fund balance and/or general obligation borrowing. The Council expects to take action on those financing options for the project in upcoming budget workshops scheduled throughout the month of October.

Mayor Tom Chesmore commented on the property acquisition by stating, “I am very proud of the Common Council for once again taking action to stop throwing good taxpayer money at bad buildings. My goal as Mayor is to see us use taxpayer dollars and put them into buildings that the community can be proud of and into facilities that will serve the city for many years to come.”