Monday, November 30, 2009

The City of Jerome Purchases Property for a New City Hall

The article reprinted below appeared in the Friday, November 27 issue of the Time News. In brief, it summarizes a special meeting of the Jerome City Council where the City reached an agreement with the Jerome School District to purchase the old Central Elementary School site. The site will be used for the location of a new City Hall, replacing the dilapidated and outdated current City Hall, Police Station, and Fire Station located at 152 E Ave A. For more information, contact the City at 324-8189.

The Times News article:

JEROME — In a rare joint session, Jerome’s City Council and school board agreed to the city purchasing the former Central Elementary School site from the Jerome School District as the future site for a future city hall, police station and fire station.

The nearly 7.7-acre site just west of the Jerome County Courthouse and county jail is one of three building sites the county considered for the proposed new county jail and sheriff’s station.

City Administrator Ben Marchant presented the proposal to the school board for the $398,500 land purchase. Of that, $175,000 will be cash and $123,000 ofin-kind reimbursement. Payment includes an agreement for the city to reconstruct Third Avenue at a total cost of $250,000 and remove a current school district maintenance building when building plans are in place.

For now, the school district will continue to use the maintenance building. Once the structure is demolished, the city will waive the building permit fee for the school district to build a replacement.

Marchant explained the city’s interest in building a municipal complex but added there are no immediate plans to build. Earlier, he acknowledged there is no financing currently in place for such project, which could be several years from realization.

School Trustee Byron Burnham said the land sale would benefit both the city and the school district.

“I think this is in the best interest of the entire community and the taxpayers,” said Councilman John Shine, Jerome’s mayor elect.

Both boards unanimously approved the sale.

There were no comments about the site being one of Jerome County’s three preferred sites to build ajustice center that wouldinclude a jail.

“We knew the city was interested in it,” County Commission Chairman Charlie Howell said Wednesday.

“The site presented a couple of different problems for the jail. It would have been difficult for a private company to acquire that property from a school district to build a jail,” Howell said, referring to the county’s lease-to-purchase proposal for a new county jail. A private company would own the facility and accompanying land.

John Plestina may be reached at or 208-358-7062

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