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Independence Sells Lot To Housing Developers

INDEPENDENCE -- Officials have accepted a $100,000 offer by housing developers to purchase a municipally owned lot in north Independence.

INDEPENDENCE -- Officials have accepted a $100,000 offer by housing developers to purchase a municipally owned lot in north Independence.

The .64-acre property, located at the intersection of Ash and Polk streets, was originally donated to the city by Boise Cascade before it shuttered its nearby mill.

Interim City Manager Ross Schultz said Independence has no plans to develop the land and that there's no requirement for easement.

Independence received one offer for the parcel after declaring it surplus in May, from Weigel Homes Inc. and Freedom Estates LLC.

Ken Perkins, Independence Public Works Director, is a principal of Freedom Estates. Weigel Homes is responsible for the 48-residence Webb Lakes subdivision in Silverton.

Schultz said on the surface, some could argue Perkins' involvement is a conflict of interest.

"But the deal was done with a public hearing and advertised as such," he said. "I made the point to council that we were dealing with a city employee and there was no dissent."

In a letter to the city, the parties said they plan to partition the land into four lots and construct four homes there.

The city will be reimbursed for the lots through a title company with each home sale in the amount of $25,000 per lot.

Schultz said the city would benefit from system development charges, new property on the tax rolls and divesting itself of land it no longer has to maintain.

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