INFORUM.com | WDAZ.com

WDAY: The News Leader

Published January 28, 2014, 06:49 PM

Sale of historic auditorium in Valley City causes confusion

Fargo, N.D. (WDAY TV) -The city of Valley City and the North Dakota Historical Society are now on the same page over the sale of the city's historic auditorium.

By: Brian Abel, WDAY

Fargo, N.D. (WDAY TV) -The city of Valley City and the North Dakota Historical Society are now on the same page over the sale of the city's historic auditorium.

Valley City was accused of violating state law by selling "the Audi" before gaining approval from the North Dakota Historical Society.

David Schelkoph, City of Valley City administrator: "It did kind of happen quickly so I understand the concern that various, the state historical society had and some other people had about this."

After failing to sell the Audi for $30,000 last year, the city had to swallow the operating cost for another 12 months.

Schelkoph: "Every year it's anywhere between $25,000 to $30,000 just for the maintenance and upkeep of the building."

So when it came time to try and sell again, the city jumped at the prospect of a new buyer.

Brandon Culver, “Audi” buyer: "The sale price is $1,000, but it's $1,000 with a plan. So people had to propose a plan of what they wanted to do with the Audi in order to make an offer at that price.

So once the plan was submitted, the City Commission voted to move forward with the sale process.

That's when the confusion begins, a newspaper reported the building as sold based off of the commission's vote.

The Historical Society said that's a violation of state law.

Schelkoph: "Because it happened so fast, we just never thought to give them a call. It was our mistake. We apologized for that. And let them know that the sale had not happened, occurred, but had given permission to go forward."

Now, after looking over Culver's plan and satisfied he will meet its requirements; the pending sale has the approval of the State Historical Society, getting the building one step closer to having a new owner.

Culver: "Plan A is an event center. We see it being like a high end Ramada Hotel where you walk into their conference room. You can hold weddings. You can do different events there."

Culver says he plans to use some of the wood from the court and bleachers during the remodeling once the sale is final and the plan is approved.

He is still considering other options for the site, including using it as building and warehouse space for any prospective companies.

The sale is expected to be completed in the next few days.

Tags: