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  • Writer's pictureWCMP

Pine City to Purchase Hillside Ave Property

The Pine City Council approved entering into a purchase agreement to acquire part of the building at 1015 Hillside Ave Southwest during a special meeting last week.

The property would cost the city around $500,000. It would serve as a space for staff to relocate to while City Hall is renovated.

According to City Administrator Scott Hildebrand, this location would not be permanent, and the city has some fluid funds to cover the purchase.

"We've looked for a variety of different options around Pine City," Hildebrand told the council. "We looked at the Fire Department, which doesn't work. There's not a plethora of places to locate staff."

Hildebrand's goal is to keep city staff located together, so they can work as effectively as possible. Once they can move back into City Hall, Hildebrand says they could recoup the money they spent by selling the building again.

If the purchase went through, the council would also make around $1,700 a month from renters in the section of the building that they would purchase.

Councilmember Mary Kay Sloan did voice concerns that using city funds to purchase the building could be better used in other areas that could better support residents.

"This is $500,000 that we could be putting into roads or all kinds of projects... I'm not against it, I don't mean to say that, but I think we have to face that. We are using the money for something else. Hopefully, it is something we can recoup," Sloan said.

Ultimately, the council approved entering into negotiations with the owners in a vote of 4 to 1, with Sloan being the lone no vote.

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