Council appoints Hildebrand to vacancy

by Emmitt B. Feldner of The Review staff

PLYMOUTH – The City Council is back to full strength.

The council Tuesday appointed Greg Hildebrand to the vacant 1st District seat, to serve until April.

The vacancy was created with the death in December of Alderperson John Anderson. Hildebrand is the only candidate to file for the April 1 election for District 1 on the city’s northwest side.

“With the unfortunate death of Alderperson Anderson, we have seven alderpersons and we have to have six for a quorum,” Council President Charles Hansen explained.

That proved to be a problem last month, when two council members – Shawn Marcom and Jackie Jarvis – were absent for a council meeting, which had to be cancelled due to the lack of a quorum.

“We’re concerned about the time from now until April,” Hansen added, pointing out that Hildebrand is unopposed in the race for a full two-year term.

The council approved the purchase of a vacant building at 133 E. Mill St. at a cost not to exceed $18,500.

City Administrator Brian Yerges explained that the empty building has been declared a blighted property in Sheboygan County Circuit Court, at the city’s request.

“This is a property we have been working on for at least the three and a half years I’ve been here,” Yerges noted. “We’ve been trying to facilitate something being done about it. It’s in the community’s interest to save the building from an architectural and a historical perspective.”

Yerges also pointed out that it is in the city’s best interests to prevent the building’s purchase by a private party who could have it reassessed at the reduced price, thus depriving the city of property tax revenues.

Yerges noted that the city demolished a garage behind the building and boarded over the empty windows on the building’s facade over the past several years.

The purchase price will cover past-due taxes and other costs and fees. Yerges said that total is $16,212.63 to date, but that other costs and fees could be added before the sale is complete, thus the request to set a maximum of $18,500 to buy the building.

A number of fees and charges are being waived by the county, Yerges added. A private buyer would have to pay over $23,000 to cover all those costs.

The city will be seeking a buyer to rehabilitate or renovate the building, Yerges said.


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