OWOSSO — The city of Owosso is repurchasing vacant property it had sold for significantly less money in 2016.
The city’s sale of the land, located at 1112 Beehler St., five years ago was part of an auction of several city-owned properties. The .23 acres on Beehler Street went for $1,025.
Earlier this month, Owosso City Council members approved repurchasing the same land for $30,000, a 2,926 percent increase over the 2016 sale price.
The original sale by the city was a mistake made two years before Nathan Henne was hired as city manager.
“Unfortunately this sale was completed in error as the property was originally purchased by the City to maintain direct access to the City’s sewer interceptor, which runs along the river toward the rear of the property,” Henne wrote in a memo to council.
“Direct access to the interceptor would be needed for the potential waste water holding tank project as part of the solution for the City’s sanitary sewer overflow issues,” he continued. “Also, this lot would provide needed access to clean and maintain the interceptor itself.”
Once city officials realized their error, with council approval the city approached the current owners of the property several times but they were unwilling to sell, Henne said.
“Recently the property was put up for sale and the City took advantage of the opportunity, putting in a full-price offer, which was accepted,” he wrote in the memo.
The sale is set to close at the end of the month. The payment by the city, deemed a “reasonable price” for will be made with funds from its Sewer Capital Outlay Fund.
“As long as I’m here, it will hopefully remain under city ownership,” Henne said in an email Thursday.