The commission held a public hearing regarding the sale former Gleason mortuary parcel, considered a contract for private development and resolution adopting the tax increment financing and modifying the area’s redevelopment plan. All were struck down in unanimous votes.
‘Local Voices Heard’
In a final effort, Ron Clark attorney Jim Susag made a plea for all three items to be tabled, announcing the developer had submitted a letter to the city asking that the council reconsider last week’s decision.
“There is no harm in tabling this tonight, … until we hear from the council,” Susag said during the public hearing.
Obviously, Susag’s pleas were not heard.
In addition, a—both for and against—the sale of the land, many citing that it was utterly unnecessary to table the items.
“I don’t see any reason to drag this out,” Holly Hanson said. “I think the city council has already made its decision. … We don’t need it. We don’t want it.”
HRA members cited multiple reasons for not supporting the passage of the measures. Obviously, after the council’s decision last week, the project itself wasn’t feasible, so selling additional land was unnecessary. In addition, more discussion on the city’s housing policy and the possible effect on struggling Richfield school were also brought up.
Ron Clark still holds an option agreement for the former city garage parcel. In an e-mail late last week, Clark told Richfield Patch:
“At this time, we are exploring all of our options for the project but have not yet made a decision as to our next steps.”
According to city attorney Corinne Heine, if the developer was to purchase that property, the closing date is June 30. There is some speculation that the developer could sue the city for preventing the project from moving forward, however, that is unconfirmed at this time.
Richfield Patch will update readers if more information becomes available.
See Richfield Patch's Pillsbury Commons topic page for more articles on the project.