The city of John Day may not earn as much as expected from the sale of its old fire hall.
Offers have been significantly lower than the expected value of $85,000, City Manager Nick Green said at the Oct. 25 City Council meeting. The low offers were attributed to renovation work needed on the building interior and roof.
The city still plans to sell the building while retaining the old city hall property nearby. Council members discussed installing a facade on the old city hall to make it less of an eyesore, or turning it into a parking lot. Councilors also said a well on the property was worth preserving.
In other council news:
• The council accepted a three year contract between the City of John Day and the Grant County Police Officer’s Association.
• The council discussed the status of an ongoing water dispute between John Day and Canyon City. Since July, Canyon City has been paying only a portion of the amount billed by John Day for the treatment of their wastewater. No action was taken, but the council seemed confident Canyon City would pay its bills by the end of the year.
• The council discussed working with the group Oregon Solutions on a long-term community project like a recreation and wellness center, wastewater treatment plant or new school bond. Oregon Solutions focuses on one long term project for a community, according to City Manager Nick Green.
• Green updated the council on a dog management ordinance currently being drafted. John Day Police Chief Richard Gray said the ordinance could not be effectively enforced as is. A teleconference between Green, Justice of the Peace Kathy Stinnett and city attorney Jeremy Green is planned Friday, Oct. 28, and a draft of the ordinance will be presented to the council at the next meeting on Nov. 8.
• The council re-capped a prior meeting with state Sen. Ted Ferrioli. During the meeting, they discussed future funding for the dispatch center. Ferrioli said that increasing taxes, such as the 911 tax, was an unpopular position. Ferrioli was, however, optimistic the state Legislature could help finance a fiber optic system for the city and other capital improvement projects.
• Several grant deadlines were discussed, including an ERA rural advantage grant, a DEQ recycling feasibility grant and a FEMA assistance to firefighters grant.
The next John Day City Council meeting will be Nov. 8 at the new fire hall on Canyon Boulevard.