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Wells wants county help for demolition

By Staff | Apr 12, 2015

The city of Blue Earth and Winnebago have both requested the county’s help and now Wells has done the same.

With abandoned and tax forfeited properties continuing to be a problem in Faribault County, the various cities are attempting to do their part to help in the clean up.

Wells city administrator Robin Leslie was present at the Faribault County Board of Commissioners meeting last Monday to discuss a property in Wells which has been abandoned for some time.

“The city is looking at some of the blighted properties,” Leslie says. “And, since I?have been here, the Frank Brothers Elevator has been at the top of my list and we would like some help from the county to do it this year.”

Earlier in the week, Leslie submitted estimates for the scope of the work which came in at around $33,000. However, at the meeting she presented the commissioners with a revised estimate.

“Now we are looking at a little more than $27,000 and are looking to do a cost share with the county,”?Leslie says.

That cost will include demo and clean up as well as removing the basement and filling in the resulting hole.

“Our policy has been to stop at ground level and the city would deal with the basements,”?commissioner Greg Young says.

Commissioner Tom Warmka agreed, and recalled that they had a similar policy in place with Winnebago and Blue Earth.

“That has been our policy and we should stick to that,”?he says.

Ultimately the commissioners voted in favor of doing a cost share on this project. But, the request confirmed the board’s hope to form a consistent policy for any future projects such as this.

“This is why we need to get a subcommittee to get involved very early on, not this late in the game a lot of work has already gone into this,” Loveall adds. “Then, from now on, we can say ‘here is what we want and how we want it broken out.'”

They approved the estimate from South Central Minnesota Excavating for $26,625.

“Let’s do this so it can stop being a liability and become an asset,”?Loveall says.

Commissioner John Roper also questioned a payment for the Winnebago demolition while reviewing bills.

The board agreed that it might be nice to hear a full report from the city during the next County Board meeting about the progress where the demolition occurred.

In other business:

They received an update from the new county engineer, Mark Daly, who handed out five-year plans to each of the commissioners.

“But, I am still trying to drive the roads and meet my staff,” Daly told the board members.

Dawn Fellows asked the board about setting a work session with I&S in order to receive a full report of how to move forward with work on the site.

They hoped to set a session sometime yet this month and Fellows said she would get in touch with I&S?to confirm.