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EMPTY BUILDING: Council cancels cash option for acquisition

September 19, 2013

SOUTH WHITLEY — When a business considered moving into South Whitley, town leaders worked with the Whitley County Economic Development Corporation to come up with a solution to acquire the former Dwyer building on First Street.

A zero-interest loan was applied for that would allow the town to lease the facility to the incoming business.

However, when the business backed out, the town was faced with a decision — to go forward with the loan process to purchase the building or not.

A special session was held Friday to weigh the pros and cons. Whitley County EDC President Alan Tio was on hand to detail the possibility of another company taking ownership of the vacant manufacturing facility.

By his estimation and the EDC’s track record, 5 to 10 companies would be shown the property in a year’s time.

“The question we have to ask is where is the value?” said Town Council President Tony Starkey. “Is it a risk? Yes, but where is the value in the building sitting there empty?”

However, at an asking price of $850,000, the risk was to great for some town council members.

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