By BECKY KISER
In April 2018, the city of Hays purchased an 18-month irrevocable option to buy 91 acres in the northeast corner of the 27th Street and Commerce Parkway intersection at the east I-70 Exit 161. That option expires September 19 of this year.
The property, currently owned by the Cathy A. Braun Revocable Trust of Hays, has significant potential for future retail, commercial, and business park development.
City commissioners will vote Thursday on whether to exercise the purchase option after discussing it during last week’s work session.
Sandy Jacobs has supported the proposed city purchase from the beginning.
“I think we made the decision to take the option for all the right reasons. I think we still have those same reasons in front of us today,” said Jacobs. “We have an opportunity to save some money on the purchase price. Let’s get it done.”
Vice-Mayor Shaun Musil has backed off his earlier support.
“I originally was a big fan of this. I’ve seen nothing to where, in my personal opinion, it’s a gain to having this property,” Musil said. “So if we do move it one, I will be voting no.”
Another “no” vote was promised by Commissioner James Meier.
“After speaking with our retail consultant, I don’t think this is something I can support,” said Meier.
“But I think the majority here supports it.”
According to City Manager Toby Dougherty, the cost to exercise the option is the original price of $800,000, less the credited option payment of approximately $17,500 if paid the day following the regular March 14 commission meeting, and prorated taxes of $108. The total remaining purchase price would be $782,608 plus shared closing costs and title insurance.
Staff is recommending the city commission approve the purchase.
Other agenda items for the March 14 meeting include:
- Holding a public hearing to hear comments regarding special assessments in the Heart of
America Second Addition and King’s Gate First Addition
- Approving an ordinance assessing the cost of improvements to Heart of America Second Addition and King’s Gate First Addition as presented for water, sewer, street, and park improvements
- Approving an ordinance amending the current city of Hays Code of Ordinance to include a reference to beer containing not more than 6% alcohol in accordance with changes in state law
- Engineering design for second I-70 water crossing and booster station
The complete agenda is available here. The meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. in Hays City Hall.