Thursday, March 27, 2008

Ambushed at the pass...

There was an interesting item on the February 27, 2008 town board agenda under Public Presentations. Except for the minutes of the meeting, no one would have known exactly what questions were being asked regarding the Willowvale Fire Company. According to the February 27, 2008 town board minutes:
PRESENTATIONS

Sale of Willowvale Fire Co., Inc.
Walter Dluginski submitted a request that the Town Board address certain issues involving the sale of the old Willowvale Fire Co., Inc. and report their findings to the public:

  • Gary Edwards of Edwards Ambulance purchased the building for $85,000

    • Who set the price
    • What was and is assessment of building

  • Did Edwards Ambulance pay rent and utilities when they occupied the building prior to the sale
  • Is there a possible conflict of interest as Gary Edwards is a ranking officer of Willowvale Fire Company
  • What is the status of the audit of the Willowvale Fire Company
  • Is it true that the Town Highway Department plows the firehouse parking lot; if so, why.
Supervisor Reed acknowledged Mr. Dluginski’s questions and referred the matter to Councilman Payne, in whose councilmanic district the Fire Company is located, for a response.
The fact is that the Public Presentation never took place at the February 27, 2008 meeting; instead Supervisor Reed took the "presenter" aside to talk to him prior to the beginning of the meeting. The "presenter" had a paper in his hand presumably listing the concerns he had regarding the old Willowvale Fire Company building on Oneida Street. Mr. Reed took the paper from the "presenter" prior to the meeting. If you listen to the videotape, you will merely hear Supervisor Reed say at the beginning of the meeting, "Walter, we have your questions..." There was no presentation and no mention of just what questions were being asked.

According to the minutes, the "presenter" asked that the answers be reported to the public. We will be watching for all the answers! In the meantime, we can answer one of the questions regarding the assessed value of the Willowvale Fire Company. According to the July 1, 2007 assessment roll available on our Online Assessment Program, the old Willowvale Fire Company building at 3472 Oneida Street is assessed for $225,200.

Isn't it funny, the town is looking at the possibility of spending $850,000 to buy a building for a new court at 19 Campion Road that is assessed for $250,000 and yet the Willowvale Fire Company sells a building for $85,000 that is assessed for $225,200.

It would appear that in the real estate game, there are no "hard and fast rules"...it all depends on who the "players" are! And guess who the "losers" are...

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

You people are never happy. The Willowvale Fire Co. is a contracted Fire Co. within the Town of New Hartford. By Edwards Ambulance purchasing this property the town and County will now have another parcal on the tax rolls not tax exempt. The new owner has taken a building that has been vacant for two years placed money into repairing the structure and given jobs to local contractors who most likely will spent money in the Chadwicks area retail sector while they are working on the renovation. With all the negative press that the Chadwicks area gets in regards to crime and aging infastructure it is a welcome site to see a local business expand and take pride in this community by renovating this property.Maybe before people start acusations they should look @ the good and stop being negative .

New Hartford, N.Y. Online said...

Accusations? Excuse me, but people (i.e. taxpayers) have the right to question...whether you like it or not.

Just because someone can put a positive "spin" on something and make it appear "wonderful" doesn't make it right. Just ask Spitzer...I'm sure it can be said that he was adding to the economy too.

If, in the case of Edwards buying this building, everything was done above board...so be it.

Let us add yet another question...At the time of the town board meetings regarding the "proposed" new firehouse, the fire department promised that the sale of the firehouse on Oneida Street and the firehouse on Chapman Road would be used to retire debt for the new firehouse. Was the money from each of the sales used for that or was it spent elsewhere?

By the way, what negative press has Chadwicks been receiving?

Anonymous said...

how nice billy virkler will be making such a huge profit for the new courthouse. VMB, LLC must be doing just swell now! At our expense!