MEDINA TWP. — Despite offers for the Remsen Building, which includes the old Weymouth School, township trustees said Thursday they will put it up for public auction once they decide on deed restrictions.
Trustees Ken DeMichael, Bill Ostmann and Ray Jarrett will meet with the township’s legal counsel and former assistant county prosecutor, Bill Thorne, to work on an agreement covering restrictions on the property the township bought in 2012 for $85,000.
When that is finished, the township plans to hold either a live auction or an internet auction for the property. Trustees said the highest bidder will acquire the building on 5 acres.
The Medina Soccer Association, one of three tenants, said it believed it had an agreement on a previous offer of $215,000 after negotiating for almost two years.
But DeMichael dissented in a 2-1 vote on to accept the sale. Thorne said an open auction must be decided by trustees in a unanimous decision.
That’s when Bill Clardy, of nonprofit Peaceworks Inc., made an offer of $300,000. He wants the office space to run his businesses.
“We’re not going to make any decisions on selling this thing (tonight),” Ostmann said at the meeting.
The Weymouth Preservation Society inhabits a three-room portion of the building that once housed the school built in 1925, including a community room, museum and the archives/storage room. The address of that part of the complex is 3314 Myers Road.
Susan McKiernan, president and curator of the Weymouth Preservation Society, said Clardy told her he would give the society a replacement archives room elsewhere in the complex, but she doesn’t want to vacate any of the three rooms
McKiernan said trustees agreed in June 2012 to let the society use the rooms of the former schoolhouse in return for housing and exhibiting the township’s history and restoring the building. She said the museum features almost 900 items and 1,000 photos pertaining to the history of the township.
“I need the 900 items entrusted to me to be secure,” she said in an email. “We need every inch of space that we have.”
She said the society spent $40,000 toward building restoration.
Clardy said his plan is to share the community room between his organization, the preservation society and the community.
A third tenant, Medina Creative Housing, uses the building for storage. Its office is on Public Square in Medina.
“I would ask as you’re looking at your deed restrictions that the trustees go back five years and look at what’s been represented to the public and the nonprofits, and that you suddenly don’t flip-flop on those commitments that have been made to all the nonprofits in that building,” Medina Creative Housing Director Dianne DePasquale-Hagerty said at the meeting.
Clardy said after the meeting that he believes deed restrictions will allow trustees to be selective in who buys the building.
He said trustees probably will put language in the deed that allows the preservation society to remain in the building forever rent-free.
Clardy is the director of Peaceworks, as well as a director of Intervention for Peace. Local developer Michael Kaminsky is the principal.
Clardy and Kaminsky renovated the nonprofit Spokes Cafe on South Broadway Street in Medina, which employs developmentally disabled people. They are working with Montville Township trustees on a second location at Austin Badger Park.
“Intervention for Peace is the provider side of what we do,” Clardy said. “It provides the waiver services, the support for the individuals. That’s for profit.”
Clardy said he is confident he will be able to buy the building.
“This is going to be for the attorneys now,” he said. “(The trustees) give a different answer every time we come to a meeting.”
Contact reporter Bob Finnan at (330) 721-4049 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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